The black swan is a part of the background scenery in book seven, Flame, in my Dreaming Billabong series. 

The example of how the male takes two years to court his mate, they dance together, feed together, and after a long courtship build the nest. 

He cares for the offspring and the couple remain faithful for life. When the kids are old enough, they chase them off.  

What an example of great love and parenting.

Feel welcome to share this photo on your Facebook page or blog. Just keep the Dreaming Billabong website address intact. 
Home » Books » eBooks
Crime Scene at Cardwell Ranch [Ebook]
FREE at the time of posting. I cannot guarantee if it will still be free

fter Hudson Savage betrayed her, Dana Cardwell hoped never to lay eyes on the seductive cowboy again. Until a bunch of old bones showed up on her family ranch. Suddenly her former lover was back in her life in a big way—to investigate a decades-old crime.

Five years ago, Hud left town with a heartload of regrets. But now, as acting interim marshal, he had a job to do. And this time he wasn't walking away. Because now Dana's life was on the line—as the unsuspecting target of a killer who still walked the canyon. Hud would do whatever it took to keep Dana close. Even if it meant risking his own heart for a second chance for both of them....

FREE Download here.
If you want would enjoy a good Australian inland drama series, check out Dreaming Billabong, below.
“I believe the road to hell is paved with adverbs...” ~Stephen King, On Writing, p125

Yes, Mr. King is one author who knows his stuff. If you haven’t read “On Writing” yet, and you have any plans to write at all, then by all means, do get it. He offers valuable insights into the nitty gritty of writing that go beyond your usual “anyone can do this if they just learn ___ & ___.”

The sad fact is that not everyone can do the writing thing. Mr. King is pretty clear on that, but it’s not only because some people aren’t talented at writing. There are people who can write very well, but they won’t make a career out of it for any number of reasons. Perhaps they just don’t enjoy it. Maybe the rest of their lives are too busy to focus on writing. Others find it too hard at some point in the process and give up.

But, I’m convinced that those who are serious about writing, no matter what their goals or genres, all have one thing in common.

They know the rules, and they know how to break them.

Like Stephen King, I agree that “good writing consists of mastering the fundamentals (vocabulary, grammar, the elements of style)” (On Writing, p 142). If you want to write, especially for purposes of publication, know your stuff. I’m talking basic, bare bones grammar first and foremost. Expand that knowledge to style and beyond that to fantastic storytelling, and you’ll find yourself at least a competent, if not good, writer.

And it’s these good writers who go on to learn how they can break the rules without readers so much as batting an eye.

Case in point: The first Heather Graham novel I read, “The Vision”, was liberally showered with adverbs and passive voice (was / had), but it was still a darn good story. Not a blockbuster hit, mind you, but good enough to keep me turning the pages. I only noticed these rule breakers because of my wonderful critique partners. I love them, mind you, but some could masquerade as adverb and passive voice exterminators at night.

You see, I’m certain after having written dozens of books, that Heather Graham knows the rules just like Stephen King knows the rules. But, like him and other good / great writers, she’s developed her storytelling ability to the point that she can break the rules and get away with it.

Not everyone can do this, especially in the beginning. If you attempt to break the writing rules too early, you risk looking like a drunken wino who smells of adverb dependence and stale clichés. When you reach the point where your storytelling ability can benefit from an exceptionally placed adverb or comfortable cliché, then you’re more like a sexy redhead in a sequined dress sipping expensive red wine at an upscale bar.

Writing in spite of rules takes confidence, people. But, it doesn’t arrive overnight by FedEx. Like a fine wine, it must improve with age and careful tending. Eventually, if you’re dedicated


Mysti Parker (pseudonym) is a full time wife, mother of three, and a writer. Her first novel, A Ranger's Tale was published in January, 2011 by Melange Books, and the second in the fantasy romance series, Serenya's Song, was published in April 2012. The highly anticipated third book, Hearts in Exile, has already received some great reviews. The Tallenmere series has been likened to Terry Goodkind's 'Sword of Truth' series, but is probably closer to a spicy cross between Tolkien and Mercedes Lackey.

Mysti's other writings have appeared in the anthologies Hearts of Tomorrow, Christmas Lites, and Christmas Lites II. Her flash fiction has appeared on the online magazine EveryDayFiction. She has also served as a class mentor in Writers Village University's six week free course, F2K. 

Mysti reviews books for SQ Magazine, an online specfic publication, and is the proud owner of Unwritten, a blog voted #3 for eCollegeFinder's Top Writing Blogs award. She resides in Buckner, KY with her husband and three children.

Contact the Author:

Facebook Page: 

Twitter @MystiParker


A Ranger's Tale, Tallenmere #1

Serenya's Song, Tallenmere #2

Hearts in Exile, Tallenmere #3 (Coming May 26!)

One of my favorite musicals is Les Miserables, and I enjoyed the segment from last night's Oscar ceremony. Did you see it? What did you think? I'll confess, Eponine was always my favorite character.
Eponine is a wonderful character and the actress they chose for the movie has a lovely, rich voice. But Anne Hathaway blew me away--I had no idea she could pull off such a heartrending role.
I love the play and was hesitant to see the movie, not a fan of most film versions of live theatricals. We went the day after Christmas and I loved it. The director's decision to have the actors sing live in the moment made all the difference. Anne Hathaway tears your heart out and it's so cool that she got to perform the same role as her mom did before her.
Taking Flight
by Adrian R. Magnuson
Still free? Click Here to find out! Jeremy Walsh’s parents assume he’s been abducted by the elderly man he met on a cross-country flight, but it’s the other way around.

Share in the journey of two unlikely companions who meet in midair: 13-year-old Jeremy, sent against his will by his career-absorbed father to spend the summer with his bipolar mother in New York, and Harry Herndon, elderly, one-legged and afflicted with mid-stage Alzheimer’s, who escapes the confinement of home for what may be his last adventure.

Outcasts of sorts, they begin their cross-country getaway, trailed by Harry’s wife and Jeremy’s parents, each of whom threaten to cut their journey short. The story that follows is a race against time and circumstance as the two quickly bond over their mutual love of birding while experiencing the joys and growing pains of Taking Flight in their own, very different, ways.
Both gold and silver are too soft in their natural form, to be moulded into jewellery, so these are usually blended with zinc, copper and nickel to render them hard enough to work and withstand wear. Zinc and copper do not cause contact dermatitis, nickel does. The higher the carat value of gold, the less nickel in it and the less likely it is to cause a nickel allergy. Stainless steel has higher amounts of nickel and I am unable to wear it and that’s why I love my Polar sports watch, there is no metal on the back where it is in contact with my skin, so no allergies.

Eczema from contact allergy runs in my family and as I have just begun to wear a Pandora bracelet I thought I would refresh my memory about how likely it would be that I will develop an eczema type allergy to this and if there is anything I can do to minimise the risk.

I found out that there are things I can do, to help stop my bracelet irritating me.

1/I can avoid wearing it when showering to avoid soap residue or dampness remaining on the jewellery as this helps the nickel to leach on to the skin.

2/ I can remove my jewellery, before exercising as sweat and salt can leach out the nickel on to the skin.

3/ If the worst happened and I did become allergic to the Nickel in the beads, I could coat then in clear nail polish to prevent them coming in contact with my skin. There is a more permanent solution and that is to have them coated in palladium, that sounds a bit to costly for me to consider, I'll use the prevention ideas 1, 2 and 4 and see where that takes me.

4/ Avoid allowing your jewellery to come in contact with bore water and spa water as these may contain traces of sulphur which is corrosive on silver allowing the nickel to leach out faster. 
Allen & Unwin Books are holding their next round of writing courses next week  and it isn't too late to sign up.

And if you want a taste of last year's novelists from the course, you can download a free copy of their 'Writing a Novel Anthology' for the Kindle.
Our Writing a Novel courses in Sydney & Melbourne are practical 6 month courses for writers ready to make the leap into creating a full length work of fiction.
Do you read or write erotic romance fiction?

Here is a sample of a new novel being published free in flash fiction sized portions with an EBook to follow. The author is eager for comments and suggestions as to how readers would like the work to proceed. The idea is to involve the reader in the work.

Don't look if you are easily offended, this i adult rated material on  the Sensual Quill web site.

Sensual Quill's serialized in flash fiction size chunks, novel, Rose Blume.

The novel is set in an art studio in Paris near the end of the 1900's.
My interest in the work, is that I've allowed my name to be used for the heroine.
He loves me...he loves me not?

The ups and downs of a plot make the story interesting.

I found the classic Hero's Journey' plot for someone who asked for a plot guide. This is easily adapted to suit our own needs.

I think the main thing with a plot, is not to drag the story, avoid wordiness, keep it moving forward not waffling off with side stories.

Keep the pace up all the way though.  Maintain  a variable tension, like with music, rise and fall, fast and slow, soft and hard, melody and rhythm.

Have tension in the plot, and if it becomes too tense, lighten it with a feel good moment and some humour, then increase the tension again, building to the climax.

I'm plotting a novel. One of the first things I do is write down all my plot ideas. Then I call up a copy of the Hero's Journey the hero's journey : summary of the steps This page summarizes the...
The Hero's Journey
Once upon a time, I used to write letters. I wrote bout things I wanted to see happen in my community. People came to me requesting I write letters for the, If the first letter did not achieve what we wanted to see happen for our community, I wrote another letter—and another—and another, until we achieved our goal.

I moved on to non-fiction writing, I had all kinds of things I wanted to say. Then, I became a proofreader, and I had other people's words to assist develop their style and grammar and their plots to point out the plot holes. I still do this, I love it.

I heard a voice within my own head. Stories longing to get out. I sat down, and I started writing. The stories pour out...I sometimes wonder where they come from.

I write on my desk computer, my laptop in the garden and my iPad on the beach, but I write—and write, all the time I'm writing or thinking of writing.

People ask, "How do you become a writer." Answer is simple, write—don't just talk about writing one day, write every day.  Even beginning by writing a blog, will teach you a lot about writing. Check out bloggersmuse.
"I was born into Bolivar's labyrinth,
so I must believe

in the hope of Rabelais's great perhaps."
-John Green, Looking for Alaska