My Love of Candles

Photo by Paolo Nicolello on Unsplash

When I write, which is every day, I sit at the dining room table. That way I’m near my dogs, my movies, and my candles.

I have a candle in a frosted glass holder exactly like the one in the photo. I keep it lit while I’m sitting there and working. I also have a teapot warmer that keeps my tea hot. It was purchased in Germany and heats the tea using a tea light. I have tapers on the breakfast bar in a holder that used to be my grandmother’s and tea lights on the window sill.

Can you tell that I love candles?

I buy tea lights by the bushel and scour sales for larger candles. I’ve been lucky enough to buy large bags filled with candles from estate sales. Those have lasted for weeks!

What do you use to make your workspace warm and comforting? Sonja

Photo by Zoran Kokanovic on Unsplash


I must admit that I love Jane Austen. I read ‘Pride and Prejudice’ almost every year and love the 1995 movie adaptation of ‘Persuasion’ (I’m watching it right now). I also love reading her other novels, including ‘Mansfield Park’, ‘Emma’, and ‘Sense and Sensibility’.

I remember reading ‘Pride and Prejudice’ for the first time and not realizing it was a romantic comedy. My brain tried to find the serious tone in every scene. I enjoyed the book much more and was more relaxed, once I realized I could laugh during some scenes and enjoy the writing.

It’s a relief to read a well-written and funny book. I’ve been disappointed so many times by reviews and cover copy that promises “laugh out loud” writing and dialogue. It rarely delivers.

I think I am a tough audience for comedy even though I enjoy it so much. It takes a lot to get me to laugh aloud, but when I do it’s with my entire heart.

The last time I laughed at writing was when I attended ‘The Play That Goes Wrong’. It was a stage play and the slapstick was expected, yet still very funny. I laughed until my eyes teared. Wholly unexpected, yet very satisfying!

I hope you find something to make you smile today. Sonja

Do you like thrillers?

This is a book for those over 18 years of age, written by an author from Florida.

This is the synopsis, courtesy of Google Books:

Five Catholic priests have been murdered all around Tampa Bay. Law enforcement forms a task force, but is unable to find this killer, whose weapon of choice leaves clues but no answers. Father Angel, head of the Vatican’s special security projects, hires Reed O’Hara to hunt down this killer. Reed is a Tampa attorney and private investigator. She is a relentless pursuer of justice in the courtroom or on the streets. Reed and her husband Jake Dupree agree to track down the priest killer, even though they are fighting a takeover of their nightclub by Russian mobster Victor Petrov.

The author has been supportive of my books and I encourage you to take a look at his book. It is published by St. Petersburg Press.

Have a happy Tuesday! Sonja

Blogs, and Podcasts, and Articles. Oh, My!!!

Lately, I have been trying to keep up on the happenings in the publishing world. What a task! Things happen so fast.

A publishing house that I admired has closed its doors. Agents come and go from agency to agency. Books are published, make lists, and then are gone.

How to keep up?

Blogs, podcasts, and articles!

I’ve also found that some agents write essays on their websites that are full of information and tips

It’s our job as writers to watch the industry and learn what’s going on. There is a lot of information on the web. Go find it.

Local indie bookstores are great sources for info and books. The owners tend to know what’s coming down the publishing pipe and are happy to recommend titles. Just ask! These fascinating and fun stores are the lifeblood of the writing game.

Near where I live, there is a large book festival that attracts approximately 135,000 people. I love attending, showing off my books, and meeting the parents and children that stroll through all the booths and tables. I have found that most want to buy a physical book and aren’t interested in downloading an ebook. I love to see people walking past my table with bags of books.

It makes me optimistic about the future of the book world.

I hope you take the time to read today. Choose the format you like and find a comfy corner. I read printed and ebooks, plus listen to audiobooks in the car. Find what works for you.

Keep reading! Sonja

Bucket List!

About a year-and-a-half ago, I was able to mark a big item off my bucket list. I was able to hike the Inka Trail to Machu Picchu!

I have wanted to see this spectacular area since I learned about it in elementary school. My sister took me there as a gift (great sister, huh?)! The Inka Trail (yes, that’s the correct spelling) was an arduous hike on uneven and slippery rocks. See the photo. That’s what we hiked on for three of the four days. We slept in tents and our porters (best ever!) cooked for us and carried a large percentage of our load.

I couldn’t have made it all the way to Machu Picchu without their help!

When I look through my (thousands) of photos from the trail, I can remember how amazing and how difficult it was to hike on those rocks, with my loaded pack, at that altitude.

It was one of the most difficult, and rewarding, things I have ever done.

I hope you have a chance to challenge yourself and cross something off your bucket list! Sonja

How I Do It

When I write longer chapter books, as opposed to the illustrated easy-to-read books, I need to keep track of characters, settings, and scenes. The ‘Fairies of Carlow’ series v. ‘The Voyage’ or the ‘Guinness the Therapy Dog’ series is a good example.

I keep a journal for each book with sections for characters, settings, chapter summaries, and events. This way I can map out rooms, homes, gardens, etc. to make sure my writing is consistent.

Since I like to write series’, I keep notes on the characters so when I revisit them in another title I can stay consistent with who they are and what they look like.

Consistency is the key when creating a world, which is what each book does.

I don’t have journals for the Guinness the Therapy Dog series since they are shorter and less complex. Also, I have the real thing laying at my feet so I don’t need to go far for inspiration or to see exactly how the white blaze goes from nose to the top of his head.

Let me know your tips and tricks for keeping track of details! Sonja


(c) 2020

The reviews for ‘The Voyage’ are in!!!

Read the illustrated easy-to-read book that has been given 5 stars!

“Everyone in the Wing Family should read this book.”

“Nicely written.”

“Has a very nice story and beautiful pictures.”

Click on The Voyage link in the left margin of this web site for the paperback or the ebook.

Leave a review on so I can see what you think! Sonja