Welcome to my virtual home. Feel free to kick your shoes off and rumage through the fridge.

Cut the Fluff

Scout has hair, not fur. What does this mean? It means she needs haircuts. Understand this. I have three sons. I don’t DO fancy hair. Just check out my own always short hairstyle on the home page. Ribbons, bows, tiaras. Interesting and pretty but not real functional at the dog park.

There's a dog under there.

There’s a dog under there.

Scenes, action, dialog, and characteristics exist for the advancement of the plot. If they do not advance the plot, cut them out.

Not sure? Ask yourself these questions:

  • Do you really need it?
  • Does it propel the story?
  • Does it strengthen the character?
  • Does it entice the reader?


  • Are you simply showing off your prose?

It may break your heart to cut it but the story will be much more comfortable without it.

I give Scout her haircuts. She doesn’t seem to mind. Then again, she has been journaling more than usual.

Dear Diary...

Dear Diary…

Show ‘Em Your Belly

Puppies are horrible creatures. They chew the couch, pee on the rug, poop in your shoes, and invade your nasal passages with their tongues. They are needy, noisy, flatulent, and they can’t even use a staircase properly. Yet we bring them into our homes by the millions and, in many cases, pay good money forContinue Reading

Take a Bath

Scout and Nelson don’t like baths. A trip to the tub elicits the most woeful dog faces you have ever seen. So how did I learn the bathing trick from them? Let’s put it this way. My dogs don’t like ‘official’ baths. But if there is a stream? A pond? A pool?¬† A stinking mudContinue Reading

Learn to Wait

About an hour before my son’s bus is due, Scout goes upstairs to begin her vigil. There is no whining. No barking. No growling. Every morning Harris tells her, “I’ll be back.” So she waits. The writer’s life involves a lot of waiting–for an answer to your query. A request for your full manuscript. AnContinue Reading

Use your Senses

My dogs love their walk. A move toward the leashes gets much tail wagging and bottom wriggling. But it’s not the exercise that gets them jumping¬† for the door. It’s the journey, the events that will happen along the way. A whiff of rabbit by the hedgerow. The cacophony of roofers on the house downContinue Reading

Try Something New

Scout is half terrier by DNA but all terrier by temperament. You know what I mean by Terrier, right? They’re that independent thinking, scrappy little breed whose sole purpose in this world is to hunt down the undeserving and shake ’em until their necks snap. Yeah, the ‘go to ground’ fighters whose personalities always out-weighContinue Reading