Neil Gaiman on Books




Unfortunately in the world of books as well as the larger world, human beings often create artificial divisions.  In his “Newberry Medal Acceptance Speech,” following the text of his wonderful novel The Graveyard Book, Mr. Gaiman speaks to the question of what books to read.

He says, “It was as if some people believed there was a divide between the books that you were permitted to enjoy and the books that were good for you, and I was expected to choose sides. We were all expected to choose sides. And I didn’t believe it, and I still don’t.

I was, and still am, on the side of books you love.” (Gaiman 320)

I agree with this brilliant writer completely: read and cherish the books you love.



A Few Reviews of Maledicus: The Investigative Paranormal Society Book 1 by Charles F. French



“Maledicus is sure to be a literary horror classic. I was amazed to find that this story was not at all what I thought it would be. In this telling of good vs. evil, of bravery and self-sacrifice, we see a portrayal of the most constant of human struggles that death often defies through sheer force of will and therein lies the deeper meaning that brought this novel to life by the author, Charles F. French. Concurrently with the demonic theme is a well-thought out philosophical approach to horror, wrapped in an evocative story that will capture your fear and terrify you. This story is abundant with tantalizing details, unforgettable characters, and words that will not only touch your heart and mind, but also take your breath away. It is a completely riveting story with suspense, mystery, horror, bravery, and a great love that transcends time. You will not be able to forget this one. It will haunt you. And, when you read it, you will know why.”

K.D. Dowdall


Once I started reading Maledicus I couldn’t put it down! I just finished it and I. HAVE. NO. WORDS… You better be writing a sequel 😀 That was incredible! I actually felt like I was going back in time and travelling through the ages. It was great to see the contrasts of each main character especially since it shows that different backgrounds/opinions can work together to make a great (and lovable) team. The theme of stopping bullies was ever present and really helped develop a great story line. I also loved the romance that was woven throughout the novel and it shows that love is omnipotent and will always conquer evil. I really loved how you intertwined the past with present and dreams with reality. Even the priest was not spared by Maledicus! I truly cannot express how great of a read this was!

Amazon Customer


The story is very Stephen King-esque, leading the reader into the minds of the characters and developing a plot line that is both engaging and thought-provoking. The horror and suspense elements make this an absorbing read, and the frequent shifting to various points of view increases the extent to which the novel becomes a page turner. I would definitely recommend the book to anyone looking for an eerie, engrossing read.

Michelle H.


Scary story! Love the characters (well, I don’t love Maledicus, of course) and their individual stories….much as one does with a Stephen King novel, you feel like you actually “know” the characters and come to enjoy their company and miss them when the book is over.

Great first book! looking forward to the next installment….”

Jane H.

Thank you to all for the very kind words!



Please follow the following links to find my novel:


Print book

Thank you!

The book trailer:

Maledicus:Investigative Paranormal Society Book I

My radio interview:



The 7 Essential Website Elements


This is an excellent post on what is needed in author websites!

Pen & Paper

Time is always a factorand that goes for readers too. So, make it easy for followers to follow. Here are 7 ways to keep followers following, but the most important thing is to faithfully respond in kind and don’t take anything for granted.

(The following is a post from WordPress forum: Most WordPress themes are free, but you can also buy a premium theme, which will come with better support and forums (meaning you can work out bugs more quickly), more frequent updates and more customization options.) 

1.Make sure your author name stands out or brand: Some authors also add a tagline or description that clearly describes the type of writing they do. For example, novelist CJ Lyons’ is “Thrillers with Heart.”

2.Email newsletter signup: Whether you send it once a year or once a week, start a free email newsletter to stay in touch with readers…

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A Spirited Tanka


This is excellent, and I hope everyone reads it.

march to Native drums ~

’til colonized beatings end ~

spark truth’s blazing fire ~

wishes won’t sop up spilled oil ~

words do not pay for the dead


(Inspired by the words of Chief Joseph, “Words do not pay for my dead people”, and the Native Nations March on Washington, D.C., today.)

#NativeNationsRise #IndigenousRising #NoDAPL

Words and Photography ©2017 Tanya Cliff ~ to contact me

Entry posted in tankapoetry & NoDAPL. Bookmark the permalink.

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Thank You, Dr. Charles French


I am humbled by Jennie’s post.

A Teacher's Reflections

I posted on my blog yesterday, “A Gift of Charlotte’s Web.”  As I scrolled down to print a hard copy (yes, I have a hard copy of every blog post- it’s wonderful), I looked at the three suggested readings of similar posts.  One was titled, “Death and Dying and Chapter Reading.”  What? I could not remember the post, as it was quite old.  Well, I read it again, and it was terrific.

Then, I looked at the bottom of the post.  There was only one ‘like’.  One!  That ‘like’ was Charles French.  He has been a follower and supporter of my blog since way-back-when.

I learned everything I needed and wanted to know by following his blog.  I learned how to thank people, how to follow people, and how to reblog.  I learned, and Charles French kept reading and liking my blog posts.  His blog has become a favorite and a gold…

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An Art Experiment: Designing My Own Ads for Garrett’s Bones


Please look at the ads K.D. Dowdall has designed for her book and consider giving some feedback to a talented writer and designer!

Pen & Paper

I was an art major my first year in college, so I considered that perhaps, “be that as it may”, I should “give it a go” to use “Paint Box” and “practice makes perfect”, so… I am doing my own twitter, Facebook, Tumblr, and WordPress Advertising, just to see if I can do it, for my fiction novels, especially Garrett’s Bones.  So…I am going to put three of them here for comments and honest feedback. Next, I am joining KDP and I can make my book FREE for honest feedback as well! So, this first attempt is not too bad. A rebellious teenager who might just be a murderer!

Number 2

                 Number 3

Feedback greatly appreciated!  And, thank you!  Karen

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Trump’s Plan to Cut Funding From Meals on Wheels=Scrooge




I do not usually deal with anything political on this site, but our times have become so extreme that I cannot pretend that writing and politics are disconnected in any way. Writers must speak our conscience.

Regarding President Trumps’s budget plan to make drastic cuts to Meals on Wheels, I remind everyone of that great writing, which was a morality tale and one of social critique: A Christmas Carol.

The ghost of his dead business partner, Jacob Marley, pays a visit to Ebenezer Scrooge to offer him a chance at redemption:

“But you were always such a good man of business, Jacob,” faultered Scrooge,

who now began to apply this to himself.

“Business!” cried the ghost, wringing its hands again. “Mankind was my

business. The common welfare was my business; charity, mercy, forebearance,

and benevolence, were, all, my business.” (Dickens 21)

The soul of a society, the spirit of a people, and the decency of a nation are largely determined by the treatment of the less fortunate. Cutting funding in any way for Meals on Wheels, which delivers food to those who might not otherwise eat, including many veterans, is an act of evil. We would do well to heed Dickens’ admonition.

Dickens, Charles. A Christmas Carol. New York. Bantam. 1997.




Happy St. Patrick’s Day!




May the road rise up to meet you.
May the wind be always at your back.
May the sun shine warm upon your face;
the rains fall soft upon your fields
and until we meet again,
may God hold you in the palm of His hand.

(Traditional Irish Blessing)


A Few Quotations on Reading


I thought this earlier post on reading was useful for reblogging.

charles french words reading and writing

“No matter how busy you may think you are, you must find time for reading, or surrender yourself to self-chosen ignorance.”                                                       Confucius


“Once you learn to read, you will be forever free.”
Frederick Douglass

WAR AND CONFLICT BOOKERA:  CIVIL WAR/BACKGROUND: SLAVERY & ABOLITIONISM Frederick Douglass, ca. 1879. George K. Warren. (National Archives Gift Collection) Exact Date Shot Unknown NARA FILE #: 200-FL-22 WAR & CONFLICT BOOK #: 113

“There are many little ways to enlarge your child’s world. Love of books is the best of all.”
Jacqueline Kennedy


Remember to keep reading!

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