Off to Explore some Canyons

All images from Pixaby

I’m vanishing from the blog for a few weeks to explore some canyons, starting with the one above.

One of the benefits of retirement is an opportunity to catch up on all those things I wanted to do earlier in my life, but never had the opportunity. While I’m not quite the daredevil I was as a younger person, the desire to explore is still as strong as ever.

I want to see curving waves of rock. Perhaps this one:

I hope to explore a slot canyon. Maybe this one:

I won’t need to rely on pixabay photos to see this. I’m going to walk through it:

I will be offline for most of my break, but loaded with books, and back with much to share.

May you find an adventure to enjoy while I’m gone.


And a Happy Mother’s Day to the women all around the world who are tirelessly “mothering” others, even if you don’t have children. You’re amazing.

Crafting Rich Characters (Part 5)

Greetings Storytellers! I’m over at Story Empire today with the last installment of “Crafting Rich Characters.” If you’re interested, there’s a worksheet with prompts from the entire series for your downloading pleasure. If you have the time, stop by to say hi. 🙂

Story Empire

Greetings Storytellers! We’re off to Part 5 of Crafting Rich Characters, the final installment of this series. In Part 1, we explored a character’s Physical Appearance, Mannerisms, and Quirks. In Part 2, we covered Attributes and Traits, Skills and Abilities, and Occupations and Interests. In Part 3, we looked at the Formative Backstory, Core Values, and The Lie. And in Part 4, we explored Secrets, The Big Fear, and The Mask.

In this post, we’re going to finish up character-building with Motivations and Goals.

And at the end, you’ll be able to download a worksheet with the aspects of character-building I’ve presented in this 5-part series.


All images from Pixabay

Motivation liesat the heart of a compelling character’s profile. Much of what we’ve talked about in previous posts will contribute to an understanding of a character’s internal motivation.

Motivations and Goals are often confused since…

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The Dudes aren’t in the kitchen with D. Wallace Peach.

I’m over at Shehanne Moore’s blog, getting interviewed by the Hamsters. Shey also wrote a wonderful review of Catling’s Bane, though you have to read through the hamsters’ hilarious commentary first. If you have a moment, stop by, and don’t forget to check out Shey’s fabulous regency-era romances. I highly recommend them. ❤

shehanne moore

D. Wallace Peach.Thanks so much for the invite to visit with you and the Dudes, Shey. What a treat to hobnob with the famous (infamous?) Hamstas. Hi guys.

Question one. · Fantasy can stand or fall on the world building and making a reader completely believe in that world. When you first sat down to write Catling’s Bane, what came first, the world she inhabits or Catling?

D. Wallace Peach. For me, both happen at the same time. Usually, the theme comes first – in this case, the ability to manipulate emotions. That bit of inspiration starts a cascade of character, world, and plot ideas that inform each other as the story takes shape. Not until that magic has run its course, do I begin writing.

D. Wallace Peach. Oh I am definitely a plotter. And I wrote all four books before I published the first. That…

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Smorgasbord Bookshelf 2022- Share an Extract from your latest book – #Fantasy #Adventure – The Ferryman and the Sea Witch by D.Wallace Peach

I’ve been a busy bee this week dealing with piles of SNOW, rare in Oregon and unheard of in April! The power came back on just in time to share Sally Cronin’s generous post. I’m over at her place today with an excerpt from The Ferryman and the Sea Witch. If you have a few minutes, head on over to say hi. And don’t forget to check out Sally’s site. ❤

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine

In this series you are invited to share an extract of 500 words from your most recent book published within the last 12 months. Details at the end of the post.

The aim of the series

  1. To showcase your latest book and sell some more copies.
  2. Gain more reviews for the book.
  3. Promote a selection of your other books that are available.

Today I am delighted to share an extract from from the fantasy adventure which I can highly recommend by D.Wallace Peach– The Ferryman and the Sea Witch

About the book

The merrow rule the sea. Slender creatures, fair of face, with silver scales and the graceful tails of angelfish. Caught in a Brid Clarion net, the daughter of the sea witch perishes in the sunlit air. Her fingers dangle above the swells.

The queen of the sea bares her sharp teeth and, in a fury of wind…

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Crafting Rich Characters (Part 4)

I just sent a manuscript off to beta readers, and I’m celebrating today with another post over at Story Empire – Part 4 of Crafting Rich Characters. If you have a minute and want to go deep into your characters’ psyches, stop on by. I’d love to chat. Happy Writing.

Story Empire

Greetings Storytellers! We’re off to Part 4 of Crafting Rich Characters. In Part 1, we explored a character’s physical appearance, mannerisms, and quirks. In Part 2, we covered Attributes and Traits, Skills and Abilities, and Occupations and Interests. And in Part 3, we looked at the Formative Backstory, Core Values, and The Lie.

In this post, we’re going to explore some of my favorite parts of character building: Secrets, The Big Fear, and The Mask. We’ll look at the juicy parts of the characters that create tension, obstacles, and perhaps some mystery.


All images from Pixabay

Now things get a little interesting. Where The Lie (Part 3) covered information the character doesn’t know, now we’re talking about things the character knows and doesn’t want anyone else to find out.

Secrets are secrets for a reason; they involve risk. Some secrets are small – the “homemade” pie…

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Crafting Rich Characters (Part 3)

Greetings Storytellers! I’m over at Story Empire today talking more about character development. If you’re interested, stop by to say hello. And Happy Writing!

Story Empire

Greetings Storytellers! We’re off to Part 3 of Crafting Rich Characters. In Part 1, we explored a character’s physical appearance, mannerisms, and quirks. In Part 2, we covered Attributes and Traits, Skills and Abilities, and Occupations and Interests.

In this post, we’re going to look at Formative Backstories, Core Values, and The Lie. These are parts of the character that we can’t see, but they’ll impact your character’s thoughts, choices, and behavior.

Formative Backstory

All images from Pixabay

All characters (unless they’re robots) have a formative life that shaped them and established their worldviews. In previous posts, I talked a little about the person as an individual, but a character is, or was, also part of a family or group. A child’s or young person’s experiences stay with them, and most people carry around some baggage from their formative years, both positive and negative.

This doesn’t mean you…

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#TenThingsYouMayNotKnow about D. Wallace Peach

I’m over at Marcia Meara’s sharing Ten Things You May Not Know About me. After nearly a decade of blogging, I had to dig deep for this one. There are a lot of things I haven’t done yet, like travel, but maybe a couple of these will surprise you.

If you have a minute, stop by for the quick read, and while you’re visiting, check out Marcia’s fun site and amazing books. Her Wake Robin series is utterly charming.

The Write Stuff

It’s time for another Ten Things post, folks, and today, I’m very happy to have D. Wallace Peach with us. Diana is one of my favorite fantasy writers, and a friend & supporter of authors everywhere, and just wait until you check out this list! 

Ten Things You May Not Know About Me
by D. Wallace Peach

  1. When I was a kid, my parents used to drop my younger brothers and me off in the Vermont woods with a topographical trail map. They’d pick us up four days later, twenty miles away. One time, raccoons got into our food, and all we had to eat for a day was one jar of jelly. We had no idea that this was, um, …unusual.
  2. I grew up with lots of animals, and I didn’t live on a farm. We had an average house in a normal neighborhood. At one time, we…

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Dare to Choose #TankaTuesday

Pixabay image by Pretty Sleepy

Dare to Choose


doorways beckon

gears and pistons fastened

we seek a master’s silver key

to click



we brave of heart

silence snaps with a snick

cogs whir and teeth weave as hands tick

time twirls


in loops

knobs thump, rings spin

through creamy clouds of steam

oil and grease, wheels whirl, and rust flakes

doors break



to infinite

portals, countless choices

through keyholes we peek before doors 

creak closed



the gyrations

clockwork machinations

we wield the ancient key and dare

to choose


I had the pleasure of choosing the image for February’s Ekphrastic prompt, and then struggled mightily to write for it! This poem is a Crown Cinquain, five stanzas, each with syllable count of 2/4/6/8/2.

The weekly #TankaTuesday syllabic poetry challenge is the brainstorm of Colleen at Wordcraft Poetry. Think about joining in. It’s great fun.

Crafting Rich Characters (Part 2)

I’m over at Story Empire today with the second post on Crafting Rich Characters. If you’re interested, stop by. And Happy Writing!

Story Empire

Greetings Storytellers!

I’m back with another installment of Crafting Rich Characters. In Part 1 of this series, we explored our characters’ physical appearance, mannerisms, and quirks. These are parts of a character we can visualize, but they aren’t the only ones.

With this post, we’re going to look at Attributes and Traits, Skills and Abilities, Occupations and Interests. These are the things the character brings to the table as part of their physical world. Then we’ll mix up everything we’ve covered so far and see what happens.

Attributes and Traits

All images from Pixabay

For purposes of character-building, we’ll use attributes and traits to describe someone’s personality. They may be qualities acquired through experience, or aspects of personality a character is born with and finds difficult to change. In essence, these elements of personality reflect the way the character approaches and interacts with the world.

People have a blend of…

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TBR Pile (stories and poems) Round-up

Thank you to everyone who played along with the prompt. And thank you to all those who stopped by to visit and read the responses from our talented community.

We had lots of poetry, some stories, plenty of humor, whimsy, affection, magic, and fun. The responses flowed in, and I was able to reblog 39 posts! Phew!

Here’s the list of links in order of receipt. Happy Reading!

Some Doggerel about To Be Read Lists by Noelle Granger

TBR/To Be Read by MK

The TBR Pile by Colleen Chesebro

A Writing Challenge – The TBR Pile by Miriam Hurdle

The Lady with Too Many Books by Kay Castenada

To Be, Or Not To Be, Either Way That’s A Lot Of Books by Carol J Forrester

The #TBR Pile #Writing Challenge by Balroop Singh

To Be Read by Deepikabanu

TBR Piles Plot your Demise by Sarah Brentyn

Another Three Letter Acronym #TBR by Geoff Le Pard

Ode to my Kindle by Chris Hall

Writing Challenge—The TBR Pile by D. L. Finn

My BFK (Big Fat Kindle) by D. G. Kaye

A Little Bit of Fun by Bernadette

The Invasion by Robbie Cheadle

Writing Challenge – the TBR Pile by Nope, Not Pam

The Unread by Annika Perry

A Reader’s Dilemma by Tara Sitser

A Tanka Poem by Gwen Plano

Like Folding Laundry #TBR by Her Nightly Muses

A Pile of Gems #TBR by Aroosa Zamarud

To Be Read – Built – Shared by Dan Antion

My Tottering TBR by Lenora

I’m Up For It by Cheryl Pennington

The Leaning Tower of Books by Abbie Johnson Taylor

My TBR Pile by Dharkanein

Theatre of Bardic Rumination by Teagan Geneviene

To be Readtinued by Chelsea Owens

The Ancient Books by Anny

The TBR Pile by V. M. Sang

A Different Adventure Awaits by Brett Polack

Read, Part Through, To Be, New… by Eric Daniel Clarke

To Be Read (a short story) by Janis

To Be Read (TBR) on a Frosty Night by Pamela Wight

A Reader’s Dilemma by Deeksha Bhardwaj

Ducks in a Row on FRI-YAY Funday for TBR!!!! by Cindy Georgakas 

Writing Challenge – The TBR Pile by June Ann

Five Spines of Doorm by Steve Tanham

A Readers’ 12-Step Program by D. Wallace Peach

And a few late comers that I didn’t reblog, but you might want to visit:

Ghost of my TBR by  Anulekha Majumdar

Are we ‘book-fat’? by Steven Tanham

Books, books, books by Brad

To Be Read Pile by Yvette Prior