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By Joanna Vandervlugt
Author of Dealer's Child and The Unravelling, Joanna Vandervlugt will take you on a creative journey whether it's discussing writing tips, chatting with guest authors and artists or escaping into a story. Joanna has over 20 years of writing experience and her debut novel The Unravelling (the first in her Jade & Sage thriller series), was a Canadian Book Club Awards finalist. She's a member of the Crime Writers of Canada, and her short stories have been published in their anthologies. Her personal essay No Beatles Reunion was published in the Dropped Threads 3: Beyond the Small Circle antho
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Stella Harvey, Creative Director of the Whistler Writers Festival and Author


E100 - Philip Fracassi, Horror Author - Gothic
E100 - Philip Fracassi is the author of the award-winning story collection, Behold the Void, which won “Best Collection of the Year” from This Is Horror and Strange Aeons Magazine. His newest collection, Beneath a Pale Sky, was published in 2021 by Lethe Press. It received a starred review from Library Journal, and was named “Best Collection of the Year” by Rue Morgue Magazine. It was nominated for a Bram Stoker award. His novels include A Child Alone with Strangers, Gothic, and Boys in the Valley. Philip’s books have been translated into multiple languages and his stories have been published in numerous magazines and anthologies, including Best Horror of the Year, Nightmare Magazine, Black Static, Dark Discoveries, and Cemetery Dance. The New York Times calls his work “terrifically scary.” As a screenwriter, his feature films have been distributed by Disney Entertainment and Lifetime Television. He currently has several stories under option for film/TV adaption. Philip lives in Los Angeles and on today's podcast, we talk about his novel, Gothic. As well as his podcast, Thank you, Philip.
September 19, 2022
E99 - M.N. Grenside, Author of Fall Out
E99 - M.N. Grenside was born and raised in London. He began his career at Lloyds of London, specializing in Kidnap, Ransom and Extortion Insurance. At age twenty-five M.N. Grenside decided it was time for a career change and he started his media career working for Jim Henson and The Muppets. He has been involved in entertainment ever since. He is an award-winning producer, producing television series and mini-series such a Lonesome Dove, Merlin, Treasure Island, Fraggle Rock and much more. Mark appeared at the renowned Oxford Literary Festival, the Malta Book Festival, and he was interviewed by the Crime Writers of Canada author A.J. Devlin There’s a lot more to say about M.N. Grenside which will be revealed in the podcast. Today, we talk about his thriller novel, Fall Out.
September 14, 2022
E98 - Sarah M. Stephen, Author of The Hanging at the Hollow Tree
E98 - Sarah M. Stephen started writing at an early age, first scribbling pages of notes while pretending to be a journalist before she could print. After mastering the alphabet, she moved into poetry and short stories. Following a few successes in grade school (a regional poetry prize) and university (a short story published in an anthology), she traded creative tales for corporate ones. A few years ago, she rediscovered her love of words and resumed creative writing. She is a graduate of The Writer's Studio creative writing program at Simon Fraser University and a co-host of the Clued in Mystery podcast. Sarah tries to balance working, parenting, and writing, while leaving a bit of time for baking and running.
September 10, 2022
E97 - Teoni Spathelfer, Author of Abalone Woman
E97 - Teoni Spathelfer is a member of the Heiltsuk Nation from coastal BC. Since childhood she has loved immersing herself in her own culture and learning about other cultures around the world. Teoni has worked as a publicist; a radio journalist, host, and producer; and an arts and music writer. Her documentary Teoni’s Dream, informed by her mother’s residential school experience, has aired nationwide on CBC Radio. Her photography has been featured across various media and sold privately. She has been blessed with three daughters and four grandchildren. Today, Teoni and I discuss the third book in her Little Wolf series, Abalone Woman. "Stories are medicine," Teoni writes. So true. It has been a great experience watching Teoni's journey. Our first interview was about the first book in the series, Little Wolf, followed up by White Raven, and then capping off with Abalone Woman. Thank you Teoni for sharing your stories and experiences on the podcast. All these books can be purchased from Strong Nations (link below), Indigo, Amazon, Munro bookstore (Victoria)
September 08, 2022
E96 - Mickey Mikkelson of Creative Edge Publicity
E96 - Mickey Mikkelson is the founder of Creative Edge Publicity. In 2006, he began his work in the literary and bookseller industry as the Special Events Manager for Chapters/Indigo, Canada’s largest bookstore chain, in St. Albert, Alberta.  Ten years later, he formed Creative Edge Publicity, an aggressive publicity firm that specializes in advocating for both the traditional and independent artist. Since founding Creative Edge, Mickey has signed some of the top talents in the literary industry, including multiple award-winning authors, New York Times and USA Today bestselling authors, and successful indie authors, many of whom have become international bestselling authors while working within the Creative Edge brand. Mickey and I have an informative conversation about publicity versus selling books. We talk about the gritty .... money. Mickey's humor makes for a fun podcast, including his story about the National Enquirer, and the red flags authors should be aware of when it comes to finding a publicist. Mickey also shares the touching story of how his daughter came up with the idea for Creative Edge Publicity logo. With over a hundred clients, Mickey explains how a simple, "I can get you a book signing," turned into what has become a boutique publicity firm, Creative Edge Publicity. Thank you so much Mickey.
August 13, 2022
E9 - Inga Kruse - Lou and the Whale of a Crime (from 2021)
I found out that a few weeks ago, YA author, Inga Kruse, after 8 years battling cancer, passed. To honour Inga's memory, her spirit, her creativity, I'm re-publishing our podcast. Inga was in midst of treatment when we recorded this episode. Inga had amazing strength. Rest in peace, Inga. E9 - Inga Kruse has been writing since she first drew and wrote political newsletters for her classmates in grade 4. Twenty years ago this Montrealer moved to BC, captivated by its rugged mountainous landscape and the love of her life. Her young adult mystery novel Lou and the Whale of a Crime features Lou, a fifteen-year-old teenage girl who, with her curious engineering mind, builds her own spy gear. Lou and her huge Great Dane, Rocky are befriended by Oliver, a wheelchair user. He is known for his clever Shakespearean quotes and his determination. The two are thrust into a serious investigation that has international implications. Inga outlines the depths she undertook to authentically represent the Indigenous people of Squamish, and the detailed feedback she received from her 12-year-old beta readers. Inga has her own amazing backstory. She explains the inspiration behind the exoskeleton, a project she was involved with as executive director of a charitable Veteran's organization, They rallied with others behind Captain Trevor Greene, the man MacLeans magazine captioned the Iron Soldier.
August 09, 2022
E95 - Diane Bator, Author
E95 - Author Diane Bator has been writing since she was able to tell a story and pick up a pencil. She works full-time at a live-stage theatre. After winning a mystery contest, she published several mystery novels, and she is a member of the Crime Writers of Canada and a local writing group. We talked about writing and her numerous series, and creating relatable heroines. Also, what do authors do on TikTok? We think we've figured it out.
August 06, 2022
E94 - H.S. Burney, Author of The Lake Templeton Murders
E94 - H.S. Burney and I discuss her debut novel, The Lake Templeton Murders, a Fati Rizvi Private Investigator Murder Mystery. It is a fast-moving, action-packed mystery. Her sleuth, Fati Rizvi, is strong and independent and will let nothing get in her way when it comes to an investigation. We also talk about the local settings. The novel is situated on the West coast of Canada. And horror movies, we talk about horror movies! Thank you, H.S. for a fun conversation.
July 30, 2022
E93 - Gordon Mott, Tears of Jurate
E93 - Gordon Mott, the author of Lithuanian Lullaby, The Angels of Klaipeda, and now Tears of Jurate is back and we talk about his latest novel. Gordon is quoted in the Baltic Times, “I have a special place in my heart for the Baltics.” Gordon is a former American-Lithuanian English teacher and he met his wife, Asta, in Lithuania in the early 1990s. Gordon’s first book, Lithuanian Lullaby, was published in early 2021, and immediately took off. The novel has been on the Amazon bestseller list in both the USA and Canada in the Lithuania category – it even achieved the coveted number 1 position in both countries. It has also sold well in Europe and has been purchased by readers as far away as India. Tears of Jurate carries on with Vana and Darius's story as well as the courageous story of Jurate, a market trader. As Gordon writes in his novel, "Welcome to 1997!"
July 23, 2022
E92 - P.D. Workman, Author, celebrating 86 novels
E92 - Award-winning and USA Today bestselling author P.D. Workman joins me on the podcast. P.D. was born in Fort McMurray, Alberta and later moved to Calgary. She wrote her first novel-length fiction at the age of 12. She continued writing novels for her own enjoyment but did not publish her debut novel until 2013. She has now published over 80 novels. Her earlier books focused on young adult literature. Her focus now is mystery and suspense. She is best known for her cozy mystery series, Auntie Clem’s Bakery; Reg Rawlins, Psychic Investigator; and her P.I. series, Zachary Goldman Mysteries. We talk about Cut Out Cookie, book 17 in her Auntie Clem’s Bakery Mystery and On the Slab Pie, book 18, which is scheduled for release July 15, 2022. We also talk about Amazon, the benefits of having your own platform, and cake! Thank you P.D.
July 16, 2022
E91 - Amy Tector, The Honeybee Emeralds
E91 - Amy Tector talked to me about her debut novel, The Honeybee Emeralds which is a fantastic summer read. Amy holds a PhD in English literature from the Universite Libre de Bruxelles. She works at Canada’s national archives, Library and Archives Canada. She spent many years as an expat, living in Brussels and in The Hague, where she worked for the International Criminal Tribunal for War Crimes in Yugoslavia. In The Honeybee Emeralds Amy beautifully weaves fiction and fact, as beautifully as the diamonds and emeralds in the honeybee emerald necklace. This suspenseful mystery is situated in Paris. From French royalty, Josephine Baker to the Mata Hari, this novel has intrigue, suspense, humor and the reader is rooting for the wonderful cast of characters. She even has The Honeybee Emeralds Parisian playlist on her Linktree account. Thank you Amy.
July 09, 2022
Teoni Spathelfer - Author of White Raven
September 30, 2021 is the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation in Canada.  Teoni Spathelfer, author of Little Wolf, returns to the podcast to talk about her second children's book in this series, White Raven. Through the pages of a children's book, Teoni recounts her mother's experience at a residential school. For so long many residential school survivors were not believed when they recounted their stories. Through reconciliation and reconcili-action, we can be a part of the change. As Teoni suggests, watch a First Nations movie, read a First Nations story.  White Raven can be purchased at Munro Books, Bolen Books, Indigo, the Sooke Museum, Amazon, and Strong Nation. Teoni Spathelfer | Facebook Teoni Spathelfer (@teonispathelfer) • Instagram photos and videos  
July 06, 2022
E90 - Steven Raaymakers, Author of The Aria of Steel Book series
All the way from Wanganui, New Zealand, I had the pleasure of interviewing fantasy author and landscape artist Steven Raaymakers.  Steven has a love for fantasy art and stories. He has painted concept art for the last 8 years including many commissions. He considers himself a visual storyteller. Steven wrote and created art during his teens, and we discuss the meshing of art and writing when it comes to crafting a series. We also discussed internal and external conflict, hand-in-hand in his novel, A Canticle of Two Souls, book 1, and his impactful words "war children." Steven's latest novel, A Canticle of War, book 3 was just published April 4, 2022. Thank you, Steven for joining me on the podcast.
July 02, 2022
E89 - Tara Moss, The Ghosts of Paris
E89 - TARA MOSS is an internationally bestselling author, human rights activist, documentary and podcast host, and model. Her crime novels have been published in nineteen countries and thirteen languages, and her memoir, The Fictional Woman, was a #1 international bestseller. Her most recent novel is The War Widow, the first in the Billie Walker mystery series. A UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador, she has received the Edna Ryan Award for significant contributions to feminist debate and for speaking out on behalf of women and children. In 2017, Tara Moss was recognized as one of the Global Top 50 Diversity Figures in Public Life. In 2021, she hosted the Audible Original true-crime podcast The Man in the Balaclava. Tara Moss lives in Vancouver with her family. Tara and I have a great discussion about her fast-paced, thrilling new novel, The Ghosts of Paris. The dialogue is intense, and the reader feels like they are watching a tennis match. Funny scenes, that noir setting, and an intriguing and secretive plot makes for a dynamite novel. Thank you Tara.
June 25, 2022
E88 - Laura Ellen Scott, the author of Blue Billy
E88 - Some people thought Laura Ellen Scott's novel Blue Billy was a cozy. She proved them wrong.  Laura and I had a fun and lively discussion about Blue Billy, the third novel in her New Royal Mysteries. Laura is a multi-published author of novels and short stories, as well as a professor at George Mason University. Laura likes writing stories with dark themes and quirky characters. She was born and raised in Northern Ohio and currently lives in Fairfax, Virginia.  We talked about the presentation and contest she had with her students and the naming of a character. I learned what Blue Billy really is--a blue contaminated soil. I also learned about coke ovens. It's not what you think, and creepy statues from dolls to Santa Claus. Thank you Laura.
June 18, 2022
E87 - Elgon Williams, author of Ninja Bread Castles
Elgon Williams was born in Springfield, Ohio and grew up on a farm in southeastern Clark County near the town of South Charleston. Elgon is the author of Science Fiction, Fantasy and Mystery with Pandamoon Publishing. His publications include Fried Windows (In a Light White Sauce); the Thuperman trilogy, starting with Becoming Thuperman, Homer Underby and the final book in the series, Thuperheroes. We talked about book 2 in the Fried Windows series. The first book being Fried Windows and the newly released second book, Ninja Bread Castles. From how our characters travel in time to onion bagels and science, we covered a lot of ground. Thank you Elgon.
June 11, 2022
Michelle Fizzard - Children's book author of Amazing Grace, A True Story of a Classroom Cat
E86 - Children's author Michelle Fizzard and I talked about her children's book Amazing Grace, A True Story of a Classroom Cat. As well as writing and the definition of success. What is success? A book deal? Completing a manuscript? Showing up? Let your writing be messy, just write. We also talked about the five writing fears. Michelle shares a humorous story about her father, as well as a touching story about her mother. Oh, and Cuddles's retirement party. Michelle is writing a new book and we talked a little about that as well. Michelle, thank you for stopping by the studio.  
June 04, 2022
E85 - Hannah Mary McKinnon - Never Coming Home
E85 - International bestselling author, Hannah Mary McKinnon, returns to the podcast to talk about her latest novel, Never Coming Home. Hanna was born in the UK. She grew up in Switzerland and now lives in Canada with her husband and three sons. Before moving to Canada, she had completed commercial studies in Geneva and worked as a PA for DuPont. Later she moved to Neuchatel and became the Purchasing Manager for a high-tech company. Hannah is the author of numerous essays and pieces. Her sixth novel, Never Coming Home is in stores now, and it's receiving great reviews. “Sly and deliciously clever, Hannah Mary McKinnon captivates with this engrossing tale of a missing wife and the devious husband who hopes to inherit her fortune.” “Hannah Mary McKinnon is back with another sit up and read until the small hours of the morning thriller.” Hanna and I discuss Never Coming Home, and writing that evil yet loveable character and so much more. Thank you Hannah.
May 21, 2022
E84 - L.A. Kessler
E84 - L.A. Kessler returns to the podcast and we discuss her thriller novel, Perfect. After reading her thriller you'll think twice about saying that word ... Perfect. There is humor in her novel which balances the thrilling escapes and the subject matter. As much as I tried to be analytical reading Perfect, I kept being pulled into the story. Lisa shares a touching story of how her mother was the inspiration for her heroine, Juliette, and which character Lisa relates to the most. Lisa is the bestselling author of passionate, page-turning fiction. She has written 40 books in over 10 years. She has twice won the San Diego Book Award for Best Published Fantasy Sci-Fi Horror and Best Published Romance. Her books have also won the PRISM award and her vampire story, Immortal Beloved was a finalist in the Bram Stoker Award. Lisa has multiple series, a blog and is the host of the podcast BookLights, which I had the pleasure of being on. If you missed the first interview I had with Lisa about her novel, Sedona Salvation, that podcast was published on March 26, 2021.
May 14, 2022
E83 - A.G. Flitcher - Boone and Jacque: Saddleton Haunting
E83 - Award-winning author A.G. Flitcher of the Boone and Jacque urban fantasy series is back on the podcast. Today, we talk about book 3 in his series, Boone and Jacque: Saddleton Haunting. We have a thorough discussion about characters, settings and motivations, as well as his pansexual and transgender characters.  A.G. Flitcher reveals the trauma he's recovering from in his personal life. He also talks about the take-away he wants writers and readers to experience after reading his novels.  A.G. Flitcher's first podcast interview when we talk about book one, Boone & Jacque: Saddleton's Secret can be found in season 1, March 6, 2021.
May 07, 2022
E82 - Deborah Lambert, Fantasy author - Son of No Man series
E82 - Deborah Lambert, fantasy author and veterinarian, joins me from Sooke, BC. Deborah is the author of the Son of No Man series. We talk about Julius Caesar, Augustus, and how our calendars have no place in the fantasy world. We also talk about writing as therapy. Our discussion about a dragon's anatomy, using science and biology to make a dragon fly and how to splint a dragon's foot will forever be in my memory. Deborah thank you. I had a great time chatting with you about your novels. Please check out the maps of The World of the Tainted under "extras" on Deborah's web page.  Books: Specifically Rydan (book 1) Social media: Twitter: FB: IG: Goodreads: Shortened: Amazon author page:
April 30, 2022
E81 - Mike Martin, Author and The Maple Leaf Mystery Conference Interview
E81 - Today, award-winning mystery author Mike Martin is on the podcast to talk about his latest novel and the first virtual Maple Leaf Mystery Conference which takes place over 5 days from May 24 to 28, 2022. Mike was born in St. John’s, Newfoundland. Mike has always been a writer, and during the last 15 years he’s worked as a freelance writer, specializing in workplace and social policy issues. He’s been published in newspapers and magazines across Canada, the US and New Zealand. His first book was Change the Thing You Can: Dealing with Difficult People. The Walker on the Cape was his first published fiction novel. He has also published a number of short stories in periodicals and on-line.  In today's podcast we talk about his 12th Sgt. Windflower novel, Dangerous Waters, the B&B which was constructed using a shipwreck's lumber; St. Pierre, which is part of France, and the virtual Maple Leaf Mystery Conference featuring a great line-up of Canadian authors and International best-selling author, Ian Rankin.
April 23, 2022
E80 - Alice Bienia - Knight Vision
E80 - Crime author Alice Bienia is back! We start the podcast talking about rocks, boulders and snakes, tapping into Alice's previous profession as a Geologist. But soon we are talking about Alice's latest Jorja Knight novel, Knight Vision. I learned that Alice is testing Jorja, putting her in situations where Jorja is weighing fact versus fantasy. Jorja's new client is a clairvoyant, who has "seen" her own murder. Alice's readers love her books and want to be her heroine's friend. I enjoy reading about Jorja and also want to warn Jorja to "watch her back". Alice talks about the opening hook in that first chapter to using real crimes as inspiration for her novels. From fat freezing to seances and our own movie analysis, Alice and I have a good time, as always. Thank you, Alice for coming into the studio. 
April 16, 2022
E79 - Karen Dodd - Everybody Knows
E79 - Prolific award-winning thriller author Karen Dodd joins me, and we have a good discussion about characters making mistakes, keeping our characters real, corruption, the mafia as well as being a discovery writer. Karen is the president of the Sisters In Crime – Canada West chapter. I was excited to talk with her about her novel Everybody Knows, a sophisticated thriller which is hard to put down. It’s the first novel in a new series, the Nicolo Moretti Crime Thriller Series. There are a few spoiler alerts. We talk about everything, including her blog and The Prostitute Pasta Sauce.
April 09, 2022
E78 - Winona Kent - Ticket to Ride
E78 - Award-winning author Winona Kent returns to the podcast and we talk about Ticket to Ride, her 4th Jason Davey novel, which is her 10th novel overall. Winona was born in London, England, but grew up in Regina, Saskatchewan where she completed her BA in English at the University of Regina. She moved to Vancouver, and obtained a Bachelor of Fine Arts in creative writing from UBC. Winona’s writing breakthrough happened when she won first place in Flare magazine’s fiction contest with her short story, Tower of Power, about an all-night radio newsman. More awards followed, including being a finalist in Seal Books First Novel contest with her spy book, Skywatcher.  Winona and I talk about the time she turned down having dinner and drinks with actor Sean Bean of Lord of the Rings and Game of Thrones, as well as scouting locations for our books, creating websites and Instagram accounts for our characters and the various avenues of marketing. I've included the link to the Figgis Green tour website as well as Winona's various social media handles. Winona, welcome back!
April 02, 2022
E77 - Lisa Kessler, Paranormal Author
E77 -  Lisa Kessler's writing career was foretold to her by a fortune teller. When she received writing advice from Ray Bradbury, she knew she was on the right path. Forty books within a 10 year period, Lisa has numerous series under her belt. She writes a blog, and she is a podcast host. Lisa's books have won the PRISM award, she has twice won the San Diego Book Award, and her vampire story, Immortal Beloved, was a Bram Stoker finalist. Lisa and I discuss the writing advice Ray Bradbury shared with her. Great advice that involves short stories and commitment. Using tarot cards to plot your novel, and we even discussed what an author should put on their Tik Tok account! Sunshine pirates and grumpy heroines, it's all in today's electric podcast. Thank you, Lisa.
March 26, 2022
Opal Writer's Magazine
E76 - Cindy DeJager is a gracious human and an amazing magazine publisher. She is the entrepreneur behind Opal Writer's Magazine and Opal Rising Magazine. Her magazine is packed with great information for writers and authors at various stages of their career. She shares why the magazine is called opal, which is a beautiful and tender story in itself. Opal Writer's Magazine started in Alberta seven years ago, now, it has subscribers from all over Canada, the US, the UK, Australia and just recently Denmark. Each month the magazine showcases an author as well as featuring individuals in the business, such as Mark Leslie Lefebrve, who was the Director of Author Relations and Self-Publishing for Rakuten Kobo. In the May 2019 issue (attached) there is advice from Jenny Hoops about D-I-Y audiobooks. Links to both issues are attached. As well, her cat Sophie, expresses her opinions. Thank you very much Cindy for coming on the podcast.
March 19, 2022
Alisha Sevigny, Author of The Secret Sands series
E75 - Award-winning YA author, Alisha Sevigny chatted with me about the 2nd and 3rd books in her Secret Sands Series, The Desert Prince and The Oracle of Avaris. The original novel in the series being The Lost Scroll of the Physician. Alisha is a talented author. Her novels can be read by all age groups, and her fierce heroine, Sesha, is an inspiration for all females. Her novels deal with issues relevant today. In fact, we acknowledged what's going on in the world and the connection to her novels. As well, The Oracle of Avaris is a YAdudebooks Award winner. Congratulations Alisha. Thank you for joining me.
March 12, 2022
Sam Wiebe, Author of Hell and Gone
E74 - Award-winning Vancouver crime writer of the Wakeland novels, Sam Wiebe, and I discuss his latest novel, Hell and Gone, which is the third novel in his Dave Wakeland series. Sam's prose is gritty and authentic. He gives the reader a great sense of living on the streets of Vancouver. We talk about beats, and Sam's not meaning music, conflict, as well as the writing courses he offers, the flagship course being Mystery Writing Mastery.  I came away from this interview thinking dig down when it comes to your protagonist's conflict, keep adding layers.  Sam’s work has won the Crime Writers of Canada award and the Kobo Emerging Writer’s prize. He has been shortlisted for the Edgar, Hammet, Shamus and City of Vancouver book prizes. As well, I got a scoop. Small screen. Tune in to find out what's on the horizon for Sam.
March 05, 2022
The Urban Escapist - Cory Scott, Artist
72 - Artist Cory Scott, moved back to Canada with three suitcases. A creative soul since a child, he's travelled the world and worked various jobs. When he and his fiancée left Australia and were selling their possessions, Cory was pleasantly surprised when Australians wanted to buy his paintings hanging on the walls. Cory knew this was a sign and pursued art fulltime. Cory’s art has won numerous awards, including in 2020, the Award of Excellence at the Sooke Fine Arts Show. On Cory’s website, Cory writes that he, “was born a daydreamer in the prairie city of Brandon, Manitoba, spending his days fishing in the Assiniboine River and melting coins on the railway tracks.” Cory explains the backstory behind the yellow VW bus, the yellow house and the yellow mailbox in his painting, Victoria, The Redfern Nursery, featured in the podcast art.
February 19, 2022
Celeste Barclay - The Clan Sinclair Legacy
Have you heard the term story bible? Or reading guides? Multi-published, bestselling historical romance author, Celeste Barclay, joins me in the studio. She is the author of 31 historical romances and after 16 years in the classroom where she was a Social Studies and English teacher, she is now a full-time author, entrepreneur, independent publisher and mentor. We talk about her historical romances, writing as a business, and her upcoming new releases. Celeste and I had a great conversation, and two days shy of Valentine's Day, it was great to talk about romance.
February 12, 2022
Mark Creedon - Caught Between Two Devils
Author Mark Creedon joins me on the podcast and we talk about his historical fiction novel, Caught Between Two Devils, which is based on the real experiences of family members, Antanas Paskevicius, and Antanas's wife Jadwyga and his sister Maria in April 1944, when they, along with other prisoners, escaped from a forced labor camp during WWII. A moving interview, Mark and I discuss favourite scenes, the little Polish car that looks like a small frog, war, romance, humanity and helping your neighbour. Mark worked in Child Welfare and Family Services agencies for 38 years until he retired in 2013. Caught Between Two Devils is available in paperback and Kindle format through and DISCLAIMER: this podcast contains a story or two about war crimes which some listeners may find upsetting.
February 04, 2022
Gordon Mott - The Angels of Klaipeda
Amazon bestselling author Gordon Mott returns to the podcast. Gordon and I previously talked on the podcast about his hugely popular novel, Lithuanian Lullaby and today we talk about Gordon’s second novel, The Angels of Klaipeda. Gordon and I have an extensive discussion about characters, their strengths, their weaknesses and finding the character to carry a new series or new story. We also talk about the Stockholm syndrome and using life events to fuel a novel, in particular the kidnapping of Terry Waite. If you live in the Chicago, Illinois area, on Saturday, April 9, 2022 at 2:00 PM, Gordon will be speaking about and signing his latest novel, The Angels of Klaipeda at the Balzekas Museum of Lithuanian Culture. Details can be found on Gordon’s Facebook page
January 30, 2022
Marcelle Dube - The Wronged Woman
Multi-published author Marcelle Dube joins me on the podcast. Marcelle is the author of numerous mystery novels and short stories. Her bibliography is incredible. She is also on the executive of the Sisters in Crime – Chapter West.  Marcelle grew up in Montreal, and after trying a few provinces, she set roots in the Yukon for 35 years and she now lives in Alberta, which she says is, “much like the Yukon in all the ways that counts.” Today, we will be talking about her latest novel, The Wronged Woman, the common error novelists make when writing the short story, the "dirty middle" and the "boys in the basement."
January 23, 2022
Christine Gabriel - Crimson Forest
Christine Gabriel is the author of the Best-Selling, Young Adult, Paranormal Romance novel, Crimson Forest, the first novel in her Crimson Chronicles Series. Her fiction has been nominated for such awards as The People’s Book Award and The Buckeye Book Award. Christine's been in the marketing industry for over 15 years and is in charge of the publicity & graphics department at Pandamoon Publishing, based out of Austin, Texas. Christine and I shared many laughs and writing experiences. In this podcast we discuss the series arc, and spoiler, yes, Christine has another series in the works. I learned about red moss and talked about Whistler's pink snow and why German tourists think Canadians are tough. Christine talked about the tough scenes, and the scene that made her go through two boxes of Kleenex.  Christine Gabriel - Writer, Books, Marketing ( Christine Gabriel - Home | Facebook Christine Gabriel (@christinegabriel31) • Instagram photos and videos Christine Gabriel - YouTube
December 20, 2021
Valerie Dunsmore - Rabbit Rabbit Rabbit
Award-winning author Valerie Dunsmore studied creative writing at Kwantlen College and graduated from the journalism program at Grant MacEwan College. She and I discuss her fiction novel, Rabbit Rabbit Rabbit, the sister relationship and her character Lily, and the lessons Lily will learn from hatred to healing. Rabbit Rabbit Rabbit is the winner of the Whistler Independent Book Awards for Best Fiction, the 29th Annual Writer's Digest Self-Published Book Awards and it placed Silver for Fantasy in the Foreword Review's Indie Book of the Year Awards. We have a magical discussion about nature and what we take for granted, and do rabbits really talk to the underworld? Pay particular attention to the podcast art on this podcast. Valerie Dunsmore - Valerie Dunsmore
November 25, 2021
Authors Across the Border Drinking Coffee
The Joanna and Benny Show. Yes, two authors, myself and Benny Sims, we are fans of each other's novels and writing styles. We talk about everything from writing in the 3rd person point-of-view to the first person point-of-view. Character arcs. What we've learned and what we still want to learn. Book trailers, promotion, and using life experiences in plotting a novel.  Benny joins me from his writing shed in Alabama. We celebrate Benny's novel Code Gray winning Killer Nashville's Silver Falchion Award for best mystery, and Dealer's Child placing #60 and #64 in Amazon's top 100 during it's first week of release. And did Benny really have 70 questions for me to answer? It's a fun conversation across the border. Benny Sims | Writing, reading, and various other mayhem Cover art photo courtesy of Jeremy Yap.
November 21, 2021
Colleen van Niekerk - A Conspiracy of Mothers
Colleen van Niekerk grew up in South Africa as a person of colour in the eighties and nineties. This meant being surrounded by stories and art, an act of expression. Her evocative debut novel, A Conspiracy of Mothers is set during a defining period in South Africa’s history. Colleen's gripping novel tells a story of love and betrayal from multiple perspectives while balancing the painful legacy of apartheid with the trials of motherhood. Colleen thank you for writing a gripping story and coming on my podcast. Listeners can catch Colleen's book launch on December 2, 2021 at 6:00  p.m. at the Massy Art Society. HOME | author ( @vanniekerk | Linktree Colleen van Niekerk (@colleenauthor) • Instagram photos and videos Colleen van Niekerk - Home | Facebook
November 13, 2021
K.L. Abrahamson - Beneath Malabar Nets
Today, multi-published author and Ellery Queen author, K.L. Abrahamson is back in the dressing room. On Karen’s website, the visitor is greeted with these words, “Writing at the dangerous ends of the earth; The various incarnations of Karen L. Abrahamson.” Karen writes, mystery, fantasy, and romance. She is also a prolific short story author and her stories have appeared in numerous anthologies.  Karen has worked as a special constable, a correctional officer, a probation officer and ESL instructor. She has travelled to East and West Africa, Burma, China, Northern India, and Peru. Karen and I talk about Beneath Malabar Nets, the second novel in her Phoebe Clay mystery series. Writing at the dangerous ends of the earth – The various Incarnations of Author Karen L. Abrahamson (
November 06, 2021
Elgon Williams - Thuper Heroes
Prolific science fiction, fantasy and mystery author Elgon Williams returned to the podcast and we talked about the Thuperman Trilogy, in particular Thuper Heroes, the last novel in his Thuperman trilogy. We talked about books, plotting, life imitating art, and what's next with Elgon now that this trilogy has ended.  Elgon was born and raised in Springfield, Ohio. He grew up on a farm in southeastern Clark County near the town of South Charleston. He’s a graduate of Purdue University, The University of Texas, and the Defense Language Institute.  The One & Only Elgon – Where the Magic Is Real ( Elgon Williams (@elgonewolf) • Instagram photos and videos Elgon Williams | Facebook
November 03, 2021
Alice Bienia - Three Dog Knight
Stranger danger. Yes, a lot was discussed on today's podcast with Alice Bienia. Three Dog Knight is the third in her Jorja Knight thriller/mystery series. We talk about writing lessons learned, the integrity of characters, and using humour for those lighter moments. Did I mention tension? Oh, and how about the series' story arc? Check out this podcast and learn about Alice's real life events that were the basis for scenes in Three Dog Knight.  Also, do not forget to complete the poll.  Alice Bienia – Crime Writer
October 30, 2021
Barbara Fradkin is Back
Multi-published author, Barbara Fradkin is back on the podcast, and we discuss her latest Inspector Green series, The Devil to Pay, which also features Inspector Green's daughter, Hannah, now a rookie patrol officer. Barbara is a retired psychologist who is fascinated with why people turn bad. She has written numerous short stories and novellas as well as the critically acclaimed Inspector Green novels. She has been nominated 4 times for the Arthur Ellis Award of Excellence in the Best Novel category and she has won twice with her Inspector Green series.  Barbara provides details about her virtual book launch which is happening on October 26, 2021 from 7 to 8 pm EST. The link to her website below has the virtual link details: Barbara Fradkin - Home as well, here is the Eventbrite link: Online Event Page | Eventbrite Thank you Barbara for stopping by the dressing room and talking with me about characters, changing up the trope and tension.
October 23, 2021
Judy J. Johnson - Thief of Reason
Judy J. Johnson and I talk about her non-fiction/fiction book, Thief of Reason. Judy is a Professor Emerita, Psychology Department of Mount Royal University, Calgary, AB. Her M.Sc. and Ph.D. theses, and her post doc fellowship at the Ellis Institute in NYC, explored the biological, social, and psychological forces that shaped the 13 characteristics of dogmatism’s rigid profile. Her non-fiction book What’s So Wrong With Being Right: The Dangerous Nature of Dogmatic Belief, and her novel, Thief of Reason, focus on dogmatism. She has taught psychology courses to university students, inmates in 2 correctional institutions and indigenous women on the Sarcee Reserve. In the summers of 1990 and 1991, she also taught students in Gaza, Israel during the intifada. She has given numerous presentations on dogmatism to academics in Canadian and international universities including Cambridge, and she is a recipient of Mount Royal University’s Distinguished Teaching Award. We had a good discussion about dogmatism and recognizing the three types of dogmatism in individuals and how to deal with dogmatic people. DogmatismCA
October 16, 2021
Cindy Buckshon - Liar, Liar, Gown on Fire
Cindy Buckshon's art has been shown in numerous art exhibitions. She obtained her BFA in Visual Arts at the University of Victoria. Her final project for the honours program was a series of paintings of Vancouver's trolley buses. She is also a graphic designer and author. In 2019 Cindy wrote Liar, Liar, Gown on Fire, a memoir about her lifelong struggle with mental illnesses, specifically bipolar disorder and factitious disorder, commonly known as Munchausen syndrome. Liar, Liar, Gown on Fire is so well written, you'll feel you're riding the buses with Cindy, a pastime that provided Cindy with much-needed peace, and ultimately long-lasting friendships. You witness Cindy's turmoil and hope she can pull through the difficult times, and you rejoice her successes.  Thank you Cindy for coming on the podcast and bringing awareness to mental illness. About – Cindy Buckshon Creative (4) Cindy Buckshon | Facebook Cindy Buckshon (@cbuckshon) • Instagram photos and videos Liar, Liar, Gown on Fire eBook : Buckshon, Cindy: Kindle Store
October 14, 2021
Susan Jane Wright - author of Box of Secrets
Susan Jane Wright studied anthropology and architecture before settling on law. She worked as a litigator before moving in–house. Her career has taken her from the boardrooms of Calgary to the streets of Beijing. Susan writes legal thrillers. Box of Secrets is her debut novel and the first in the Evie Valentine mystery series. It was a finalist in the 2021 Crime Writers of Canada Award of Excellence for Best Unpublished Manuscript. When she’s not writing Susan’s travelling with her husband and two daughters. Her favourite vacation was a trip from Prague to London on the Orient Express.  Susan is celebrating the virtual launch of Box of Secrets. Listeners can register for the launch through Owls Nest Books through this link Susan Jane Wright (@susanjjwright) • Instagram photos and videos
October 09, 2021
Writing Humour - Not So Easy
Alice Bienia has a passion for nature, photography, motorcycles, and coffee. She went to university and emerged with a Bachelor of Science in geology. Her work in remote regions of Canada honed her insatiable curiosity, fuelled her imagination and deepened her desire to learn. She writes full time. She approaches her creativity, imagination with the all important, ‘head down, butt in chair,’ skill she’s acquired along the way to creating challenging crimes. The author of Knight Blind, Knight Trials and her recently released Three Dog Knight, Alice Bienia joins the panel in the dressing room to talk about humour. Alice Bienia – Crime Writer C.J. Papoutsis lives in a crooked old building on a crooked old street near the sea in Victoria, B.C. where she stares out the window waiting for brilliant stories and poems to smack her on the head. Writing is Carolanne’s lifelong passion. From the time she was five, she made little books from cut-up paper and scribbled on the pages. Despite being captive in Civil Service for 35 years and a cancer skirmish, she has kept on writing “because it’s more fun than therapy.” She also designs and makes jewellery. Her essays, short stories, mysteries and poetry have been published in Monday Magazine, Senior Living Magazine and two anthologies; Dropped Threads 2, Blood on the Holly, and on Stories Less Spoken, and Erik D'Souza is the author of Death in Halfmoon Bay, a Suzanne Rickson mystery. Erik's first book, Straight Men in Gay Bars sold internationally. His novella and short stories have been published in various literary magazines, both in print and online. Like all authors, Erik has many stories to tell. We talk about how important pacing is when it comes to writing humour. Learn about Erik's publishing company Timbercrest Publishing and how it has helped authors reach their publishing dreams. and Photo taken by Photo by Srinivas Bandari on Unsplash
October 06, 2021
Jule Selbo - 10 Days
Do you know what a mud angel is? You'll find out with this episode's multi-talented author, Jule Selbo. Jule spent 20+ years working as a screenwriter at major film studios in Los Angeles, including working for industry giant George Lucas on The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles. Other shows Jule worked on were HBO’s Women Behind Bars, George Romero’s Tales from the Darkside and Monsters, and Aaron Spelling’s Melrose Place. Portland, Maine, Jule calls home, and this multi-published author, playwright, screenwriter, producer and professor, joined me on the podcast and we talked about using screenwriting techniques to plot a novel.  Jule’s short stories have been published in Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine. Jule shares what she learned about her heroine Dee Rommel in her debut novel, 10 Days. And I also learned that Jule has a clever shot on the pickle ball court. Jule Selbo Jule Selbo (@juleselbo) • Instagram photos and videos
October 02, 2021
Trevor Atkins - The Day the Pirates Went Mad
Children’s author Trevor Atkins and I had a blast in this episode. There's a lot of laughter and a GIVEAWAY, so listen closely. Trevor educated me on pirates and the extensive research he did crafting this exciting and intriguing children's novel. The Youtube portion of this podcast will be uploaded in a few days and listeners can see the many drawings and illustrations that Trevor makes reference to. Trevor lives with his family on the west coast of Canada and has been working with words for much of his life, but he has only recently pursued historical fiction. A storyteller and role player of detailed characters, Trevor finds it natural to weave together many intertwining plot threads when writing. The Day the Pirates Went Mad is a middle-grade historical fiction, set at the turn of the 18th century. Follow the adventures of orphanage runaway Emma Sharpe as she voyages to the West  Indies aboard the New Adventure. This book is not only a children’s book, but also a great resource for teachers. Trevor has created a comprehensive website which includes a teacher’s guide, an author’s log and games. There is one section near the end of the podcast when Trevor and I are talking about pirate games, and my internet was interrupted, but Trevor does explain if his pirate game is connected to his novel, The Day the Pirates Went Mad. Now Available – The Day the Pirates Went Mad ( Trevor Atkins writes - Home | Facebook
September 25, 2021
The Take Over - Dealer's Child
The dressing room is taken over by Rudy, the rescue dog and Rudy's human. This time the interviewer, Joanna Vander Vlugt, is the interviewee. Susan Jane Wright, author of the soon-to-be-released novel, Box of Secrets, questions Joanna about the second novel in the Jade & Sage thriller series, Dealer's Child. What were the tough scenes? Why does Joanna insist on doing her own book covers? Is Jade, Joanna's alter ego? We also learn about the new characters that came to life on the pages of Dealer's Child. Joanna mentions Bill Morrison, the author of Lions in the Grass, Gordon Mott, the author of Lithuanian Lullaby and author Debra Purdy Kong. JCVARTSTUDIO-theDressing-Room (@jcvartstudio_thedressing_room) • Instagram photos and videos JoannaVandervlugt (@jcvartstudio) • Instagram photos and videos
September 11, 2021
Mystery Author, Debra Purdy Kong
Debra Purdy Kong has 40 years of writing experience. A former criminology student, Debra draws upon life experiences, including her security work, to plot her novels. She has two series, the Alex Bellamy series and the Casey Holland series. A prolific author, we talk about writing (of course), language, characters aging and does that impact their dialogue. As well as over-cooked brussels sprouts! Mystery Author, DEBRA PURDY KONG - Home
September 04, 2021
Gordon Mott, Author of Lithuanian Lullaby
Gordon Mott is the author of the historical fiction novels, Lithuanian Lullaby and The Angels of Klaipeda. He has lived and worked in the UK, Australia, Canada and Lithuania. With a degree in politics from Trent University in Peterborough, Canada, he holds an interest in East European development and has taught and travelled extensively in the region. We had a good discussion about the writing of his first novel, Lithuanian Lullaby, an epic historical fiction novel which is also a love story. The novel highlights western and eastern cultures between 1987 and 1997 following Lithuania's Independence and has been number one on Amazon in Canada and the U.S. Gordon has been interviewed extensively overseas, and his novel has been featured in numerous publications worldwide. I was honoured to be his first Canadian interview.
August 28, 2021
Josh Kully - Author, poet, illustrator
Have you heard the JAWS-approach of storytelling? Josh talks about using the JAWS-approach when it came to writing his short story The Stork, which is not only story, but also poem, which Josh also illustrated. Author, illustrator, creative, Josh and I discuss what success means to us, writing fiction that has weight, and sharing experiences through writing and art. Which came first? Art or writing?  Illustrator | Josh Kully | British Columbia Josh (@joshkully) • Instagram photos and videos Joshua Kully | Facebook Josh Kully - YouTube Josh Kully (@JoshKully) / Twitter
August 21, 2021
Stella Harvey, Creative Director of the Whistler Writers Festival and Author
Stella Harvey is a multi-published author, the Creative Director behind the Whistler Writers Festival, and a mentor in the Writer's Studio at SFU. She has a wealth of insight and writing experience, and she is not afraid to take risks. Born in Cairo, and having lived in Rome and Calgary, she now calls Whistler home. This beautiful mountainside location is where she found her writing community and where her writing career took off. A simple advertisement in the local paper started a writing group which bloomed into the Whistler Writers Festival. We had a great discussion about writing, taking chances, Canadian poet and novelist Andreas Schroeder staying in her home, and Ernest Hemingway's connection to Canada. And, Happy 50th episode JCVArtStudio from the Dressing Room.
August 14, 2021
Penni Jones, Author of the Suicide Souls
Penni Jones’s website is titled, Scapegoats and Sacred Cows, and under that title is written This is my existential crises, get your own. She has a sharp, refreshing voice. Penni is also an editor, screenwriter & t-shirt wearer. Her novels are Suicide Souls, Kricket and On the Bricks. Penni and I talked about writing, imaginations and how in her dedication she writes about the grief following suicide. As we talked about Suicide Souls, we agreed that her novel has many layers, it's part thriller, part mystery and has humour. As much as this is a work of fiction, Penni respectfully writes about the topic of suicide. We have a good conversation including her inspiration behind some of her scenes. Would you believe the Detroit airport? And ghosts. Scapegoats and Sacred Cows – This is my existential crisis. Get your own. Penni Jones author (@pennijonesauthor) • Instagram photos and videos
August 07, 2021
Kemeasha Brown, Children's Author
Kemeasha Brown is a children's author, who, after flight delays, touched down in New York City and joined me on the podcast. Kemeasha's children's book, "It's Ok to Not Be Ok," is a doorway for parents and children to discuss mental health. Her book is enjoyed by all ages and is receiving accolades from all over. Kemeasha's "attitude of gratitude" comes through in our discussion. Kemeasha explains the inspiration for her book, including the book cover and illustrations. Our discussion levered into issues affecting us all. Kemeasha knew the timing of her book was just right when she saw Japanese professional tennis player, Naomi Osaka, on the cover of time with the caption "It's Ok to Not Be Ok." After listening to this podcast, you'll come away feeling inspired. "What act of kindness have you done today?" Kemeasha Brown (@meashawritebooks) • Instagram photos and videos Meashawritebooks Thank you to Vitriol for the new music.
July 31, 2021
Sue Stoney - Zero Waste
Sue Stoney has authored textbooks. She has sewn for as long as she can remember. She creates her own dyes and dyes her own wool, silk and other fabrics, as well as producing her own patterns. Zero waste. When she’s not scouring linen with soda ash to prepare it for dying with onion skins, Sue is blogging or zigzagging around Australia discovering all sorts of public art. Sue joins me on the podcast and we talk about zero waste as well as kick around the idea of Sue writing a fictional novel. fadanista – For indulging my fads Sue Stoney (@suestoney) • Instagram photos and videos 2021 British Columbia Fires - Canadian Red Cross
July 24, 2021
Indie Filmmaker and Author Ashley Good
Ashley Good is an author, podcaster and indie filmmaker. She joins me on the podcast and we discuss everything from her YA novel, Mary & the Alien, filmmaking, and being the creative behind the Foggy Isle Film Festival. We discover we are both fans of The Umbrella Academy, and we agree that creative expression is not about following the rules but creating and putting your creation out there, be it novel or film.  Ashley Good Mary & the Alien — Ashley Good Foggy Isle Film Festival – Foggy Isle Film Festival ( Ready, Set with Ashley Good — Ashley Good
July 18, 2021
Moonlight and Misadventure
Six amazing authors join me in the dressing room and we talk about their short stories in the Moonlight and Misadventure anthology, which is the third short story anthology from Judy Penz Sheluk’s Superior Shores Press. Award-winning short story authors from the US and Canada are featured in this anthology, as well as talented new authors, who are breaking into Canada's mystery writing scene with their unique voices. These individual stories flow so nicely together. They are notes in a phrase of music. And to tap into your moonlight theme, when I read the stories of these authors, I thought of Claude Debussy’s Clair de Lune. This anthology was a pleasure to read. Susan Daly - Joie de Livre Judy Penz Sheluk | One Writer's Journey
July 04, 2021
Candas Jane Dorsey - writing on the edge
Edgy, different and a nameless protagonist.  Candas Jane Dorsey's writing style defies convention. As I said to Candas during our interview, she's in the driver's seat of a Bugatti and she's just told me to "buckle up."  Candas is a prolific internationally known award-winning author. In 2005 she was awarded the Province of Alberta Centennial Gold Medal for her artistic achievement and community work, and in 2017 the WGA Golden Pen Award for Lifetime Achievement in the Literary Arts. In 2019 she was inducted into the City of Edmonton's Arts and Cultural Hall of Fame.  Candas and I share favorite story lines and discuss her nameless protagonist in her book The Adventures of Isabel, the first in her Epitome Apartments Mystery series.  Candas can be found on the socials at Candas Jane Dorsey at art - Home | Facebook and Candas Jane Dorsey (@CJDwriter) / Twitter Photo taken by PJ Groeneveldt
June 26, 2021
Bill Morrison - Lions in the Grass
"What are you that Random House is not?" "Be nimble. Be quick." Today, I have award-winning author and consultant, Bill Morrison on the podcast. Bill is the author of Lions in the Grass, a #1 Amazon Bestseller as well as the 2020 Canadian Book Club Award winner in the 2020 Business/Self-Help category. He has appeared on the CTV Morning Show talking about “the tricks of professional persuaders” and is a consultant in the field of emotional positioning and consumer behaviour. He has spent the last 25 years uncovering the elements of influence and persuasion that impact human motivation. After two decades of unprecedented success in condominium tower marketing, he now consults with corporations, brands and individuals on how to emotionally connect their audience with their offerings. In the beginning of the podcast you will hear about Bill's 2 book giveaway. The first two listeners to email me the correct answer to the question: What is the title of the "great great book" written by Sun Tzu that Bill refers to in the podcast? will win a free copy of Bill's book Lions in the Grass. Bill Morrison Author of Lions in the Grass ( Bill Morrison (@billmorrisonwrites) • Instagram photos and videos Bill Morrison - President - Newterra Marketing Consulting | LinkedIn Morrison Writes - Home | Facebook
June 19, 2021
Teoni Spathelfer - Author of Little Wolf
Today I'm excited to share my discussion with creative Teoni Spathelfer. Because the recording is a little difficult to hear in some sections, we had horrible weather during the recording, I wanted to note the names mentioned. Teoni shared the sound effects of the waves for her documentary, Teoni's Dream, with Elder Gilbert Joe. Teoni mentions Chief Dr. Robert Joseph, who is part of Reconciliation Canada. Heritage House is the publisher of Little Wolf, which we discuss on today's podcast.  Teoni's Dream can be listened to at the 4:40 mark here February 26, 2010 - Part 1 |  Teoni felt her ancestors were bringing her a message through her dreams. Little Wolf is the first in a trilogy, and it tackles topics such as racism, isolation and overcoming challenges. The second book in this trilogy is White Raven. Teoni blends three generations of women to create her character, Little Wolf. A beautiful children's book which is appropriate for children and adults. Tune in and learn about Fire Woman who came to Teoni in her dreams. Teoni Spathelfer | Facebook Teoni Spathelfer (@teonispathelfer) • Instagram photos and videos 65 Canadian picture books to check out in spring 2021 | CBC Books
June 13, 2021
Wild Wood Creative - She's a Scroll Saw Artist
Lauren was a registered nurse and mom at an early age. She didn't anticipate after her first child, she would suffer from post-partum depression. With the love of her family and help from her physician, she slowly started to feel better and emerged from those dark days and found her calling as a Scroll Saw Artist. She now chases her dreams one project at a time in her garage. Lauren's business Wild Wood Creative is thriving. I was able to get this Scroll Saw Artist to stop by for a quick discussion about her journey and art. Wild Wood Creative - Home | Facebook Wild Wood Creative (@wild.wood.creative) • Instagram photos and videos
June 11, 2021
Hannah Mary McKinnon - You Will Remember Me
Hannah Mary McKinnon was born in the UK. She grew up in Switzerland and now lives in Canada with her husband and three sons. Before moving to Canada, she had completed commercial studies in Geneva and worked as a PA for DuPont. Later she moved to Neuchatel and became the Purchasing Manager for a high-tech company. Hannah is the author of numerous essays and pieces. Her fifth novel, You Will Remember Me is in stores now, and it's receiving great reviews. On Friday, May 28, it was on the Globe and Mail’s list of “riveting thriller novels to start summer off with a bang.” They also tweeted that, “McKinnon is a writer to remember.” Hanna and I discuss using “sweet” similes to describe a voice, how Hanna went from writing a rom-com to suspense, writing in multiple first-person points-of-view, and breaking rules to produce the best novel possible. Home - Hannah Mary McKinnon Author 📚 (@hannahmarymckinnon) • Instagram photos and videos Hannah Mary McKinnon - Home | Facebook
June 05, 2021
Lila Harrison King - Love Like a Mama
"Three years of hoping and dreaming and praying and begging. Three years of anticipation and disappointment hang here in this room." Lila Harrison King has been on her own motherhood journey. She is a writer, and a podcaster, who wanted to reach out to mothers all over the world. She created a beautiful, one of a kind keepsake book, Love Like a Mama. This book is for moms in any stage of motherhood. Its daily dose of encouragement reminds us that being a mom comes in all shapes and stories. There isn't a right way to mother. Just a loving way. Her hardcover book is filled with daily encouraging thoughts, wide margins for doodles, and a journaling section.  Lila joins me on the podcast and we share stories of motherhood, not wanting to disappoint our children, wishing we could offer more, lots of laughs and love. You'll feel like you've had a virtual hug. Lila's podcast, Love Like a Mama can be heard on any listening platform.  Love Like A Mama | Lila Harrison King Lila Harrison King (@lovelikeamama_) • Instagram photos and videos Love Like A Mama (
May 29, 2021
Ana Warner - Twin Flames
Ana Warner's two novels, The Soul Contract and The Soul Union are fictional stories to teach about the important lessons about love. Ana was born in Bucharest, Romania. In her early years she was raised in West Africa and immigrated to Saskatchewan as a teenager, where she received a Bachelor of Sciences at the University of Saskatchewan. Ana began writing poetry, short stories and lyrics to music at the age of eleven. As she grew older, her quest to understand who people are and why they behave the way they do lead her to educate herself in Astrology.  We have a good conversation about self-respect, toxic reality and expectations in a relationships. I also learn about the twin-flames journey. Ana can be found at Ana Warner 🇱🇷🇷🇴 (@anico28) • Instagram photos and videos  
May 26, 2021
Coffee with Brian
Brian Richmond, a U.K. promoter of indie authors, and I have a virtual coffee and catch up on what's new on his website Home (, and what's new in my life as an indie author and podcaster. We discuss traditional publishers and how today's indie author is learning to do everything, including book trailers in particular, my book trailer of The Unravelling The Unravelling ( Brian and I share our proudest moments, the pros and cons of social media, and learning about marketing. I recap about some of the authors I've had on the podcast from Canada and abroad, and Brian and I agree, location has nothing to do with a good book. Erase the borders and it all comes down to good storytelling.  
May 22, 2021
Benny Sims - Code Gray
Benny Sims is a fan of Lee Child's, Jack Reacher series. He's worked with the aerospace industry making windows for the President's Air Force One. Benny has always liked storytelling. He can trace that fondness to reading Jack London’s The Call of the Wild when he was in second grade and listening to his great uncle tell war stories from his time as an artillery cannoneer in North Africa and Italy during WW II. Benny was born and grew up in middle Tennessee, but his family moved to Benton, Illinois. It was there that his teachers noticed his aptitude for writing and encouraged him to pursue it. He attended college at Murray State University in Kentucky where he studied journalism. After college, he landed a job as sports writer and editor with a small newspaper near his hometown.  Benny and I have a great conversation. We talk about his really good prologue which didn't make it into the book and why (YouTube link below), as well as Lee Child's writing style of two steps forward and one step back. I learned about the Fairness Doctrine. Have you heard of a pitch party on Twitter? You will today. And Benny surprised me when I found out when he wrote Code Gray, his debut novel. Benny writes like a seasoned author with multiple novels under his belt. Prologue for CODE GRAY Book Reading with Author Benny Sims - YouTube Code Gray Book Trailer - YouTube Benny Sims, Author | Books | Series | Interview | Deals | Newsletter | Contact | Site | AllAuthor
May 15, 2021
Elgon Williams - Becoming Thuperman
"When the rubber meets the road," Elgon Williams. It was a trip down memory lane talking with Elgon Williams about his novel, Becoming Thuperman, the first in his Thuperman series. His middle-grade reader novel takes the reader to simpler times, in fact 1988, through the eyes of Will, his 8-year old protagonist. I enjoyed interviewing Elgon as I virtually jumped across the border to Las Vegas to chat with this Science Fiction, Fantasy and Mystery author. Elgon was born and raised in Springfield, Ohio. He grew up on a farm in southeastern Clark County near the town of South Charleston. He’s a graduate of Purdue University, The University of Texas, and the Defense Language Institute. We talked books, piano, karate, life choices and even a little about the Vietnam War.  The One & Only Elgon – Where the Magic Is Real ( Elgon Williams (@elgon.williams) • Instagram photos and videos
May 08, 2021
K.L. Abrahamson - Through Dark Water
Multi-published author and Ellery Queen author, K.L. Abrahamson is in the dressing room. On Karen’s website, the visitor is greeted with these words, “Writing at the dangerous ends of the earth; The various incarnations of Karen L. Abrahamson.” Karen writes, mystery, fantasy, and romance. She is also a prolific short story author and her stories have appeared in numerous anthologies.  Karen has worked as a special constable, a correctional officer, a probation officer and ESL instructor. She has travelled to East and West Africa, Burma, China, Northern India, and Peru. We talk about stepping out onto the ledge when writing, real camping, and her thrilling and breath-taking novel, Through Dark Water. We had a great discussion even after being podcast-bombed by Shiva and Ozzy. Writing at the dangerous ends of the earth – The various Incarnations of Author Karen L. Abrahamson ( Karen L. Abrahamson | Facebook
May 01, 2021
Alisha Sevigny - The Lost Scroll of the Physician
Alisha Sevigny is an author of Young Adult, Middle Grade and Children’s Books. She is a literary consultant for those seeking assistance in writing and publishing their novel. She holds a degree in Professional Writing and Sociology from the University of Victoria, is a film school graduate, former literary agent and yoga teacher. She is passionate about Ancient Civilizations and her new middle-grade series Secrets of the Sands launched in 2020 with The Lost Scroll of the Physician and is followed by The Desert Prince. No matter what your age, this is a thrilling series for any lover of Ancient Egypt, mystery and adventure. Alisha Sevigny alisha sevigny (@alishasevigny) / Twitter (2) Alisha Sevigny, Author | Facebook
April 24, 2021
Vanessa Åsell Tsuruga - Forget-me-not Forever
Vanessa Åsell Tsuruga leads the Digital and Content portfolio, weaving in the contractual  sponsorship assets from the sports and entertainment properties in the Rakuten portfolio.  Prior to Rakuten, she worked for ASICS in Sponsorship Activation, Sports Marketing, and PR roles at the Global Headquarter (Kobe, Japan) and Scandinavian office in Stockholm, Sweden.  She also worked as a Tokyo based BBC World Service freelance reporter. Vanessa holds a  Master’s Degree in "Olympic Studies, Olympic Education, Organization and Management of  Olympic Events" from the International Olympic Academy and a BA Journalism from City  University, London. She has run 6 marathons. Vanessa is also an author. She published her  debut novel in Swedish on International Women’s Day 2020, and had it translated into English. Forget-me-not Forever is available on Kobo as an eBook. Join Vanessa and I as we talk about translations, Frankensteining-sections of text, using the New York marathon as a metaphor for life and why Vanessa is constantly receiving pancake emojis.  Vanessa Åsell Tsuruga - Senior Manager | Global Sports Digital Strategy - Rakuten | LinkedIn Vanessa Åsell Tsuruga | Facebook Vanessa Åsell Tsuruga (@vanessaaselltsuruga) • Instagram photos and videos Forget-me-not Forever eBook by Vanessa Åsell Tsuruga - 1230003979167 | Rakuten Kobo Canada Förgätmigej för alltid eBook by Vanessa Åsell Tsuruga - 1230003700594 | Rakuten Kobo Canada
April 17, 2021
S.M. Freedman - writing what she fears
International Amazon Bestselling author, S.M. (Shoshona) Freedman, joins me in the dressing room. Her debut novel The Faithful was selected by Suspense Magazine as a "Best Debut of 2015." The sequel, Impact Winter, was published in 2016. Shoshona and I talk about writing what we fear, nightmares, keeping the intensity and keeping the story human. Shoshona acknowledges "working" to write the perfect narrative paragraph, and she jokes about the original title for her standalone thriller The Day She Died, a novel I could not put down. We delve into Judaism and Catholicism. Shoshona is currently working on the third and final instalment in The Faithful Series. Her standalone psychological thriller novel, The Day She Died, published by Dundurn Press, is being released April 27. Signed copies of The Day She Died is available through Book Warehouse. Shoshona is a proud member of the Sisters in Crime, Crime Writers of Canada, International Thriller Writers, and Mystery Writers of America. At my urging, Shoshona shares what it was like to watch the sun set on a rooftop in New York City during Thrillerfest. S.M.F (  S.M. Freedman - Home | Facebook S.M. Freedman (@smfreedmanauthor) • Instagram photos and videos S.M. Freedman - Pre-order The Day She Died Now (@SMFreedman) / Twitter
April 10, 2021
Judy Toews - Lucky Jack Road
As a child Judy Toews published the neighbourhood news at $0.25 a pop, then she was the editor of two school newspapers. Her first novel, Give Out Creek, was a finalist for the Arthur Ellis Award for Best Unpublished Crime Novel and the 2019 Lefty Award for Best Debut Mystery novel. Her protagonist, Stella Mosconi, is a newspaper reporter, and we discuss Judy's second novel in the Stella Mosconi series, Lucky Jack Road. Judy used to work as a nutritionist. She has a love for science and forensic work. Judy shares a few good resources, such as Howdunit Forensics: A Guide for Writers, written by D.P. Lyle. To learn more about Judy check out her website She can be found on Instagram at JG Toews (@jgtoews) • Instagram photos and videos Twitter JG Toews (@JudyToews) / Twitter and on Facebook JG Toews | Facebook.
March 27, 2021
Sisters in Crime - Canada West - the Crime Wave anthology
Crime Wave is the  Canada West anthology published by the Sisters in Crime - CW chapter. It features K.L. Abrahamson, J.E. Barnard, Alice Bienia, Marcelle Dubè, Debra Henry, Winona Kent, Charlotte Morganti and Merrilee Robson. Melodie Campbell writes the Foreword in this collection explaining why crime has always been a woman's genre, and each of these talented authors joins me in the dressing room. I learned a lot such as retro-fitting a story, skiing 10 kilometres in -20 degrees in the Yukon, working from a 3-act structure, the snowflake method of plotting and there's even some Shakespeare. As much as these authors are dedicated and serious about their craft, they are also incredibly funny.  Thank you Sisters in Crime - CW for joining me in the dressing room. We have to do this again in person. Cheers.
March 20, 2021
Jennifer Kaddoura, Editor
"Play with words." Editor Jennifer Kaddoura is an artist who has found her perfect creative space. Her devotion to critical thinking, creative writing and empathy is obvious in her editing approach. Jennifer is intensely curious about insights gained through lived experience and finds joy in helping her clients achieve their publishing goals. She encourages her clients to courageously share their insights, helping them to present their vision clearly and, often, compellingly. “What matters in this complex and crowded world is the authenticity and clarity of your voice — freeze-framing your kaleidoscope so that others may benefit from your insights.” She has extensive experience in both customer service and editing. She began her career at an innovative, fast-growing software company. Her client service skills and commitment to meeting every deadline propelled her into positions requiring steadfast dependability. She became the primary relationship contact for numerous large companies in both Canada and the US, as well as the primary contact for white-glove executive services across all clients. When the company sought to better their education materials, her talents in clear communication and document design were put to use in the position of comprehensive editor. She has since moved to Victoria, B.C., where she is employed as a Legislative Editor for the B.C. Attorney General Ministry. Additional Victoria editing experiences include Senior Editor at Hansard Services, with the Legislative Assembly of B.C., as well as editing various projects through her freelance platform — historical fiction, creative non-fiction, online material, professional content for small businesses and local-area artists and academic theses (Master's level), with projects in Canadian and American English. Jennifer Kaddoura Editorial Services (
March 13, 2021
Andre Gress - Urban Fantasy Author
Andre Gress is the author of Boone and Jacque Saddleton's Secret, the first novel in his urban fantasy series. In this novel readers are introduced to the great friendship between Boone and Jacque as they discover there's more going on in Saddleton. Why do the teachers only teach history from grades to 3 to 5? Who is Shammy, the girl who, "smells like cotton candy and cookies," and should Boone and Jacque join the Saddleton Truth Seekers? Andre discusses drawing upon real life events to shape Boone and Jacque's journey and the underlying themes.  Andre is writing book 3 and when he's not involved with Boone and Jacque's adventures, he writes poetry which can be found on his website agflitcher – writing is truly powerful when someone says thank you for what you created. (
March 06, 2021
Jenn Ashton - Creativity Unleashed
Jenn Ashton considered herself a writer at age 6 and she was first published at age 14. She writes in many genres and forms from children's books, newspaper editorials, music magazine columns to training materials and literary fiction. In 2015 she began working as a virtual artist in North Vancouver. Her work has the nuances of Picasso. In 2020 she was long listed for the Kanturk Arts Festivals' Flash Fiction, in 2019 she was the recipient of the Muriel's Journey Prize for Poetry as well as the Jericho Writer's Flash Contest.  She searched for her First Nation's family history.  Her fiction novel, People Like Frank: And Other Stories from the Edge of Normal, will have you laughing and reflecting, as you follow the stories of life's real heroes--the people on the edge. Author Jenn Ashton ( Jenn Ashton Art (
February 20, 2021
Helen Garlick - No Place to Lie
Helen Garlick joins me from the UK. We talk about her memoir, No Place to Lie. Helen and I discuss the circumstances surrounding her brother's suicide, the importance of conversation and having no secrets, expressing and showing love. Despite our serious conversation we also share light moments and special memories, including when Helen met Princess Diana. Hello! It's better to talk - YouTube
February 13, 2021
Erik D'Souza - Indie Author and Publisher
Point of view such as 3rd person fixed, back stories for all characters, creating tension in a cozy, check out today's podcast with multi-published author Erik D'Souza as we discuss his latest novel Death in Halfmoon Bay, a Suzanne Rickson mystery. Erik's first book, Straight Men in Gay Bars sold internationally. His novella and short stories have been published in various literary magazines, both in print and online. Like all authors, Erik has many stories to tell. We talk about the characters in Death in Halfmoon Bay, finding humour at the kitchen table and paying homage to writing greats Agatha Christie and L.R. Wright. Learn which Canadian authors are Erik's favourite, 3 out of 4 who have stopped in the dressing room. Get the scoop on his publishing company Timbercrest Publishing and how it has helped authors reach their publishing dreams. As well as, find out what everyone keeps asking Erik to write about. and
February 06, 2021
Multi-Series Mystery Author Brenda Chapman
Mystery, plotting and poetry. Brenda Chapman is the author of over twenty published novels, and that’s not including short stories. She has written the lauded Stonechild and Rouleau police procedural series, the PI Anna Sweet mystery novellas and the Jennifer Bannon mysteries for middle grade readers. Her work has been shortlisted for several awards including 4 Arthur Ellis awards. We talk about her latest novel, Closing Time, as well as Elmore Leonard, Ann Gorman and Bob Dylan. Brenda Chapman – Mystery Author
January 30, 2021
The Barbara Fradkin Interview
Barbara Fradkin's latest Amanda Doucette novel is being launched January 28, 2021, and you have an invite to her free launch. Listen to our informative podcast and how Barbara is paying homage to Canada and its beautiful scenery through her writing. Learn about a braided story and how each chapter should have conflict. And, MacKenzie and Ozzy did not steal the show, although they tried. Grad a coffee, tea or glass of wine and enjoy writing wisdom from Barbara. Barbara Fradkin - Home
January 23, 2021
Linda Maki, the creative behind Lanyos Handmade
Your purse is made out of wine cork. Join me in a fun conversation with my sister, Linda Maki, the entrepreneur behind the shop Lanyos Handmade and the writer of the sewing blog Nice Dress! Thanks I Made It. Linda’s journey started in her teens with a blue sewing machine and a pair of pink pants. As an adult, to satisfy her purse habit, she started creating her own purses. Linda’s philanthropy includes making masks, the proceeds of which are donated to the ALS.
January 16, 2021
Lou Who?
Lou Who? Louise Johnson is the author of Lou Who? a memoir of self discovery, as well as the blogger of the popular blog Divorced and Dating at 30 Blog - Author Louise Johnson ( In 2013 Lou saved herself from a destructive marriage, and with a one-way ticket in her hand, she left behind her old life in Edinburgh, Scotland and started a new life in Vancouver, British Columbia. Her memoir reflects her honest and raw journey of self discovery. Louise Johnson - Author of Lou Who?
January 09, 2021
The Self Publishing Agency
This entrepreneur has been in the top 5 for the BC Business Awards. She has written her own memoir, a beautiful love story. She has met with Hollywood execs to get her memoir optioned into a movie. Writers who have self-published with her have seen their books optioned. Her self-published authors have been written about in U.S. trade magazines. She has been featured on Global TV as well as in “I Like Her Style” Magazine and the cover of North Van Run magazine. The CEO behind The Self-Publishing Agency, Megan Williams, is on today's podcast.
January 02, 2021
Tarneet Kaur - escaping into Abstract
Tarneet Kaur is an abstract artist from Ontario. She has been featured by Art Feature Magazine and World Art by Ecoreal. Her use of bright colours in her abstract pieces are beautiful. Her art is available on coasters, pillowcases and prints which can all be purchased through her Etsy shop Soul Art One.
December 26, 2020
Alice Bienia of Calgary discusses characters and plotting
Alice Bienia is the author behind the Jorja Knight mystery series. Her debut novel was a 2016 Arthur Ellis Award finalist for unpublished crime novel. Alice's writing is clear and fast-paced. You'll find yourself staying up late to read "one more chapter," and then laughing out loud with her humour. Alice is a member of the Sisters of Crime. She has a Bachelor of Science degree in geology. Website:
December 19, 2020
Judy Penz Sheluk
 A talk with the Chair of the Crime Writers of Canada and multipublished author Judy Penz Sheluk about her mystery series, writing cozies, plotting, and hooking in the reader. Do you know what a holographic will is?
December 12, 2020
Tara Moss - International bestselling author
Tara Moss, human rights activist and UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador talks about her latest book, The War Widow, a gripping novel set just after WW II. Discover Tara's latest heroine, P.I., Billie Walker, a fierce feminist heroine. As well, learn what Tara has endured for the sake of research.
December 06, 2020
Can't Breathe
Laesa Faith Kim's novel, Can't Breathe, won the 2020 Whistler Writer's Independent book award. Laesa's writing is honest and raw. You will reach for tissues and laugh out loud, as you read her story about raising her beautiful little daughter, and the challenges involved . A story that renew one's faith in humanity. 
December 02, 2020
Tony Ollivier, thriller author of The Amsterdam Deception
With his debut novel, The Amsterdam Deception, Tony Ollivier takes readers on a dangerous adventure through the streets of Paris and Amsterdam with hero David Knight battling not only his memories, but the memories of a dead spy. Tune in to learn about Tony's writing process and the rockstars of writing.
November 29, 2020
Mamma Marzia's Kitchen
How do you make the perfect espresso? What should you do to your pasta for good luck? Tune in to listen to Mamma Marzia as she talks about leaving Italy and coming to Canada, and the love and stories behind each recipe in her cookbook.
November 25, 2020
Seamus Heffernan author of the Thaddeus Grayle series
Seamus Heffernan says, "...if you want a fun story..." join Seamus and I as we talk about writing expectations, balancing fatherhood with writing a novel, and the highs and lows of being an author. Seamus Heffernan
November 21, 2020
PART 2 - Dave Butler - eco mystery author
Tune in for part 2 as Dave talks about the 3 "p's" in writing, hearing his first night hunt and sharing many insights in the writer's journey. The Author – Dave Butler Writing
November 18, 2020
Dave Butler, eco mystery author
Learn about the new mystery genre gaining momentum involving a new type of heroine. Tune in for Part 1 of this fun and engaging interview with award-winning and multi-published author, Dave Butler. The Author – Dave Butler Writing
November 15, 2020
Blue Devil Books - Brian Richmond
This is the episode every indie author needs to hear. Blue Devil Books in the U.K. wants to promote you. Brian Richmond joined me and explained the process and the desire to support indie authors from around the world. Check it out. Home (
November 07, 2020
Setting the scene
Using her own novel, The Unravelling, as an example, Joanna provides listeners with tips of what to include in your scene. Tune in for updates and announcements.
November 04, 2020
ART tag - a talk across the Canada/US border
Be entertained by Joanna's and Rachel's intimate, lighthearted and reflective art conversation across the Canadian/US border.
October 28, 2020
A captivating discussion with author J.E. (Jayne) Barnard about her latest novel Why The Rock Falls.
The Falls is more than a mystery series. It takes on issues such as PTSD and M.A.I.D. Listen to this intimate discussion with Jayne Barnard as she talks about drawing upon personal experiences to bring these issues to light. Author Talk (
October 24, 2020
An interview with multi-published author Winona Kent.
A fun heartfelt interview with author Winona Kent, discussing everything from book covers, a G-String, writing, publishing, characters and locations. Winona Kent
October 17, 2020
Dont Judge A Book By It's Cover
Joanna takes listeners on her journey independently publishing her novel after not writing for 20 years to the valuable lesson she learned about having the right book cover.
October 10, 2020
October 9, 2020
October 09, 2020