Category Archives: The Writing Life

Strange Bedfellows Indeed

Almost Famous – Unlikely Buddies

Quote of the Day: Most Americans, like most Japanese, view their dogs, cats, and other animal companions as family members, and rightly so. Ingrid Newkirk

The Writing Life, Carolyn Bowen Author, Book Blogger

Bubba Blue and Tookie are unlikely buddies and their friendship has made them almost famous. Their alliance has garnered them the reputation of being strange bedfellows indeed. In my last post about the duo, I mentioned Bubba Blue needed a new aquarium to get some airflow moving through his water world.

The Writing Life, Carolyn Bowen Author, Book BloggerIt arrived and I put it together, all by myself. I felt victorious and intense satisfaction for instructions that made sense. I immediately filled the tank with betta water, gravel, an aquatic plant and a play toy for Bubba Blue. I let the water circulate for 24 hours prior to introducing Bubba to his new home.

The rest is history. Bubba swam around and inspected his new quarters as Tookie watched in awe. Since bettas (known as “labyrinth fishes”) take their oxygen from the surface of the water, it makes it easier when he swims to the top to greet his friend.

Tookie always awakens me to feed them both in the mornings. Every day their routine continues – morning kisses to start the day. It’s great having best buddies to brighten my day!

The Writing Life, Carolyn Bowen Author, Book BloggerThe Writing Life, Carolyn Bowen Author, Book Blogger

My Writing Life

The Writing Life, Carolyn Bowen Author, Book Blogger

Setting Goals

My goal for 2018 is to complete a new novel and I’ve begun the first steps toward that goal – focus with a purpose!

I plan to make myself accountable for achieving my new year’s mission. You’ll probably see me talking about that here from time to time.

Join the Fun

If you’re a mystery book reviewer and would like to be a beta reader for my new novel, let me know so I can add you to my reviewers’ list.

Thank you for reading and reviewing my books on reader/novel platforms. Your kindness is greatly appreciated!

Where to Buy My Novels

Check at your favorite online bookstores and corner bookshops. Click the direct link to begin reading on Amazon. Happy reading!


The Long Road Home: Romantic Murder Mystery


Cross-Ties: Historical Fiction Passages

I’ll be writing and sharing on social media. Hope to see you there, too! Carolyn Bowen

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Time Management for Authors 2018

Time Management for Authors 2018

Quote of the Day: Real seriousness in regard to writing is one of two absolute necessities. The other, unfortunately, is talent. Ernest Hemingway

The Writing Life, Setting Goals, Time Management, Carolyn Bowen Author

I’ve resolved that 2018 is going to be the best year ever for me and my writing. First, I’ve got to clean out some debris from habits formed that keep me from my main focus – writing.

As an author they’re several hats we wear, or at least I do. From studying my craft, learning new computer applications (that’s supposed to help reach new readers) creating content for marketing campaigns, interacting with social media, I often have little time to actually write.

I need to set that in focus. For me to actually write – I need inspiration which usually comes through travel. It’s like a story is waiting to be told in the places I visit. Other words, I really need time to travel. If you’ve read any of my interviews, you know I write from the seat of my pants which makes editing a nightmarish expense as well as time-consuming. Yet, I wouldn’t trade the experience for the world.

There are two things that I’ve learned are important to success – time and resources to accomplish your goals. How often have you heard the phrase time is money? Well, it is! When you’re spending time doing something, its dollars spent. You could be earning money elsewhere or in the least relaxing.

Carolyn Bowen Author, The Long Road Home, Cross-Ties, Long Road Home, The Writing Life, Book Bloggers, Blogging

My Remedy

  • Have a clear objective of what I want to accomplish in 2018. This means stating (writing it down) an objective that can be measured. For example, more books sales – what does this require of me?
  • What are the tools that I need to accomplish the objective? Depending on your objective, the tools may vary. However, for authors who already have published books, there’s a need to continue promotions while writing new works of fiction.

In this case, research the best promotional tools – whether this is book marketing companies to promote your books, search engine advertising, Amazon advertising, or any of the major social media sites advertising.

Make a calendar and schedule time for writing new content for advertisements and social engagement.

Writing – set realistic goals and time frame for completing the steps towards completing a new manuscript.

  • Implement new strategies – Yes, trust the new process, monitor promotions and update as needed.

Back to my question, how can I make time to accomplish my personal goal of publishing a new book in 2018 while at the same time continue promotions of my books? It’s all about time management!

Today’s author has to be on the top of the playing field with presence and genuine offerings. I’d love to hear what works for you! Wishing you a super 2018, Carolyn Bowen

Where to Buy My Novels

Check at your favorite online bookstores and corner bookshops. Click the direct link or image to begin reading on Amazon. Happy reading!


The Long Road Home: Romantic Murder Mystery

I hope 2018 is a wonderful year for you! I’ll be writing – and enjoying some great times too. Carolyn Bowen

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Happy New Year 2018

Happy New Year!

Quote of the Day: “For last year’s words belong to last year’s language. And next year’s words await another voice. And to make an end is to make a beginning.” T. S. Eliot

Carolyn Bowen Author, The Long Road Home, Cross-Ties, Long Road Home, The Writing Life, Book Bloggers, Blogging

This past year has gone in a flash! All my writing plans didn’t get completed in 2017. But, that’s history! It’s time to start setting goals for 2018. What are your plans?

Carolyn Bowen Author, The Long Road Home, Cross-Ties, Long Road Home, The Writing Life, Book Bloggers, Blogging

New Year’s Wishes

“We will open the book. Its pages are blank. We are going to put words on them ourselves. The book is called Opportunity and its first chapter is New Year’s Day.” Edith Pierce

Please check out my novels here and at your favorite bookstore!  Wishing you joy, peace, happiness, and abundance in this new year. Carolyn Bowen

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Merry Christmas

christmas 2017D

Christmas Day Blessings

Thank you for following my blog and connecting on social media. From my home to yours – wishing you and your family a Merry Christmas! Carolyn Bowen, Author – The Writing Life

Hope to see you on social media during the count down to the New Year 2018!

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Book Blog Tour: The Lost Macaw

Quote of the Day: There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you. Maya Angelou, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

The Lost Macaw, B.L. Blair, Writing Life, Book Blog Tour, CMBowen Author, Book Blogger

Book Blog Tour featuring author B. L. Blair

The Lost Macaw, B.L. Blair, Writing Life, Book Blog Tour, CMBowen Author, Book BloggerThe Lost Macaw by B. L. Blair

About the Novella

The Lost Macaw is the fourth novella in the Lost and Found Pets series. Alexandra Prescott is a licensed private investigator specializing in finding missing animals. Reuniting pet and owner is more than just a job.

A former client hires Alex to find her lost parrot. The bright colored bird has flown away before, but this time there is evidence that Molly was kidnapped. The demand is simple—the bird for the pictures.

When her client suffers a stroke, Alex is left with a ransom note, a missing bird, and some very incriminating photos. She is in a race against time to solve the mystery of the lost Macaw.

Excerpt:

“Your little old lady is quite interesting, Alex,” Halie said.

“What do you mean?”

“She didn’t exist until about thirty years ago.”

“What?!”

“I did a preliminary background search on her. In general, she is clean. No debt. The house is paid off as is her car. The one thing that jumped out at me was the fact that she had a safe deposit box at four different banks.”

Luke raised one eyebrow. I got a sinking feeling. I had noted the bank accounts but hadn’t really given them much thought.

“Yeah,” I said, “I saw those.”

“So why does an eighty-year-old woman need four safe deposit boxes?”

“Why does she need more than one?” Luke muttered.

“Exactly,” Halie said. “So I dug a little deeper.”

“What did you find?”

“About thirty years ago, Joseph and Trudy Kearns purchased the house on Carriage. Back then, it was a new neighborhood, and the prices were cheap. They paid cash. They also opened a bank account, and Joe got a job working for the city. Those are the first records I can find for either one of them.”

“Trudy would have been fifty at that time. Her husband probably a few years older. What about birth certificates? Social security cards?”

“They had them, but conveniently, they were issued from a small county in Virginia where a massive flood destroyed all their records. The county office was in the process of moving the old paper records to electronic when the flood hit.”

“Let me guess. The Kearns’s records did not survive the flood.”

“Nope.”

“So the only records for them are the ones they had in their possession.” I paused a moment. “Do they look real?”

“Yes,” Halie replied.

“So they could be authentic.”

“Or really good forgeries. In some ways, it was easier back then.”

“Anything else?” I asked.

“Not really. Lives on a fixed income of social security and a small pension from her husband’s job. It isn’t much because he only worked for the city for twelve years before he had to retire.”

“Okay, thanks, Halie.”

After ending the call, I looked at Luke. He had a perplexed look on his face that I had a feeling mirrored mine.

“Who the hell is Trudy Kearns?”

The Lost Macaw, B.L. Blair, Writing Life, Book Blog Tour, CMBowen Author, Book BloggerAvailable on Amazon, Nook, iBooks, Kobo, and Smashwords

The Lost Macaw, B.L. Blair, Writing Life, Book Blog Tour, CMBowen Author, Book Blogger

Thank you for following my blog and connecting on social media. Wishing you and your family a Merry Christmas! Carolyn Bowen, Author – The Writing Life
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Rioting Against The Odds

Book Blog Tour with Author Mark Kloss

Rioting Against The Odds, Adventure poems, Author Mark Kloss, Writing Life, Carolyn Bowen Author, Book Blogger

Quote of the Day: “Books are the quietest and most constant of friends; they are the most accessible and wisest of counselors, and the most patient of teachers.” Charles William Eliot


Rioting Against The Odds
Today’s spotlight is cast on poet, storyteller, and author Mark Kloss. His new book of poems, Rioting Against The Odds was just released and has quickly stormed up the charts to number one best seller.

Love adventure? Be transported to another time and place with Mark’s powerful word imagery. Read more and escape to another world that is best introduced in Mark’s own words.

Follow his blog to be in the know about his upcoming book releases, sweeps, and more!

Christmas PlainThank you for following my blog and connecting on social media. Merry Christmas! Carolyn Bowen

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Blog Tour with Author Jaci Wheeler: Silent Song

Silent Song by Jaci Wheeler, Book Blog Tour, Blogging, The Writing Life, Carolyn Bowen Author, Jaci Wheeler Author, Play it forward, Book Blogs, About the author, Inspiration, Author InterviewSilent Song coming to life by Jaci Wheeler

Notes from Author Jaci Wheeler

Many authors I know pull from events or people from their own lives for inspiration or storyline. I’ve never been that way personally. I’m an extremely private person by nature, so it’s very unusual for me to use any of myself in my books. That is actually my favorite thing about writing; I’m able to fully create worlds and people out of thin air. It allows you to become whoever you want for the moment. I usually create a main character that is nothing like me because it allows me to be and do all the things I’ve always wanted to.

I’ve had a very eventful life. Those who know me well always ask why I’ve never drawn from my real life for a novel since my life is pretty much a lifetime movie. The idea of writing anything close to home has always been completely horrifying to me. (Super private remember?)

I have a pretty unique situation where I lost my hearing at eighteen years old. (You can read more about it in my letter to the reader in Silent Song.) Deafness is one of those subjects that most people think they understand…but actually, don’t. There is so much more to deafness than not being able to hear. There are levels (decibels) of sound that is so intricate that it is much more than just you can hear or not.

A few years ago I read a book that had a deaf main character. The book was amazing, but there were so many things that weren’t accurate. It wasn’t glaringly obvious unless you were deaf, but it really bothered me. I had brought up the issue to a good author friend of mine and I’ll never forget what she said to me.

“The only way to fix this problem Jaci is to set it straight. That means you are going to have to write the story of a deaf person from their perspective. Show people not only your world but help them understand the deaf world. Who else will?”

I instantly shut her down. There’s no way I’m writing anything close my life. A few months went by and then I had to explain a few things about deafness to people that they just never knew. Like just because you speak English doesn’t mean deaf people can write in English without a struggle. Almost every hearing person I talked to didn’t know that American Sign Language is NOT English. It has its own structure and rules like any other language. ASL is my second language, but it’s the main one I use at home with my husband. It’s hard for my brain to switch back and forth between ASL and English. Because of this, I tend to change tenses when I write, which is very frowned upon in writing. I’m pretty sure I’ve driven every editor I’ve ever had to drink over this little fact.

After having to explain this to several people over a very short amount of time I finally came to terms with the fact that I was going to have to write a story with a deaf character.

Silent Song by Jaci Wheeler, Book Blog Tour, Blogging, The Writing Life, Carolyn Bowen Author, Jaci Wheeler Author, Play it forward, Book Blogs, About the author, Inspiration, Author Interview

I decided to go home and just see if I even had a story in me. I don’t outline, ever. I just start writing. I usually write the end first, then the beginning and fill in the middle. (Yeah I’m weird.) So I went home and just started writing to see if I even had a story in me…and I couldn’t stop. I wrote through the night, and all weekend long. By the time I took a break I had almost written half of the book. This is the only book I didn’t have to re-write or revise. It was trapped deep down and apparently ready to be freed. I cried more while writing this story than I have probably ever cried in my life. But it was also the most cathartic thing I‘ve ever done.

This story isn’t my own, but the feelings are completely mine. The painful feelings, fears, and passion are all mine even though the story belongs to Barrett alone.

Silent Song by Jaci Wheeler is available on Amazon today.

Thank you, Jaci for sharing the story behind your new novel, Silent Song.

Order your copy of the Silent Song today! Happy reading! 

Thank you for following my blog and connecting on social media. If you get a chance say hello or wave, thank you! Carolyn Bowen

Social Media Hangouts!

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