Easter eggs – kinda

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Preferences fullsizeoutput 832 Several years ago, I went to see some action movie and the ticket seller went into a fast-talking pitch about Easter Eggs.


I wasn’t the first time I had heard the term, but it was the first opportunity I could actually ask someone to explain.For anyone reading this who doesn’t know, it means an image, word or name imbedded in a movie or computer game like an inside joke for the viewer to discover.

I’ve got my own Easter Eggs in my mysteries and this new romance book. They are family or friends, addresses, or locations from my life. In my defense, it’s hard to create names for upwards of forty characters in each book!Take a look at Romance in the Western Desert and see if you can find yourself.


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Fall in Southern Arizona

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Post from October 27, 2020  

Post from October 27, 2020  
fullsizeoutput 805This is fall in Southern Arizona 
In Southern Arizona, late October is when the bougainvillea is bursting with blooms and it’s time to plant mesquite and palo verde trees for shade next summer.My winter garden will only be pots of herbs, lettuce, and arugula this year to cut fresh for dinner each night.Wait – if I’m in Arizona, why do I write about North Carolina?Nostalgia is one reason because I lived there for three years.The other is that there were so many eventful episodes when I studied primate behavior at Duke that I had to share some of them in my mysteries.Speaking of mysteries, DEADLY WOODS, is on sale Oct. 28 for only $2.99 on Amazon! And always free to Kindle Unlimited people. DEADLY WOODS Happy Reading! 
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Everyone Needs a Villain

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Well, not in real life, of course.

But in fiction, a villain is a necessary evil.

The hero of a book needs to have someone to provide a challenge, an obstacle or a conflict or else the reader gets bored.

When the villain is particularly nefarious, the stakes are raised.

Think of The Joker, Voldemort, Cersei, Darth Vader, or Nurse Ratched.

These guys just keep on coming, no matter what level of good or compassion is offered.

My villains (and yes, I have to create them to vex the protagonist) tend to be intelligent, entitled, and self-involved. In my previous world of work there were enough of them to be able to choose traits from one and habits of another to create someone you love to hate.

Check out the various villains in DEADLY WOODS out today on Amazon.

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I’m Back!

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Actually, I never went away. I have been tapping the keys on two new books which are out in agent-land looking for a publisher. If you think cooking up a plot, writing, editing, and rewriting is hard, trying to get published is harder. Reading that JK Rowling’s Harry Potter was rejected by 12 publishers does not make me feel any better. But, I’m still plugging away. And now, I am expanding my social media platform to Twitter(@IbanezAuthor) and Instagram (Andrea9889) to get broader coverage. Feel free to share with family and friends!

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Even fictional people need a weekend off sometimes

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After a few long weeks of living, loving, scheming, talking, thinking, planning, arguing, and finally coming to the halfway point of the first draft of “A Hoot Owl’s Call,” the first book in the Carolina Trilogy II, my fictional folks took the weekend off.
That means, aside from not following what they are doing and writing it down, I was also relieved of them chattering away in my head during otherwise quiet moments.
PBS binge Sunday night and then back to the factory!

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Vicky and Me

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Vicky and me
For those of you who watched “Victoria” on PBS for the past few months, here is a roundabout anecdote that can get you past the withdrawal.
At the Tucson FOB this past weekend, where I was hawking my new book,”WASTE WATER,” one of the authors in the Indie Tent (Independently published authors-nothing to do with Harrison Ford) brought his pregnant wife who is due in a few months. Being very tiny, she was a bit worried about how large the baby was projected to be and said she hoped there would be no problem.
It reminded me of a conversation I had with an older woman when I was pregnant with my first child many years ago who related that when she was at that same stage, her mother said there was nothing to it. You started to feel labor pains, they ‘put you out,’ and when you woke up, the baby was in your arms. At the time, I was horrified by the lack of information about childbirth for that generation of women, and the young woman I related it to was wide-eyed with disbelief.
But then I remembered that it was Queen Victoria who inadvertently popularized anesthesia during childbirth. She had nine children and after the birth of her seventh decided that something ought to be done about what they probably called the “discomfort” of the process. She and Prince Albert connected with physician John Snow who recommended chloroform, rather than ether, which had come into use during surgical procedures and was presumed safer. Thus, she had the soon to be famous experience of being ‘put out’ and waking up to a baby in her arms.
Dr. John Snow not only promulgated anesthesia and better hygiene in surgical situations, he is credited with linking the germ theory to the spread of cholera, a virulent disease often found in crowded areas and previously thought to be cause by ‘miasma.’
So, John Snow did know something after all.

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Writing in a Cave

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I wrote most of “A Tanager’s Tale” at the entrance to this cave on Palawan in the Philippines last spring.
While the archaeologists dug, I sat and pounded out the 3rd book of the ‘Carolina Triology.’ (That’s my laptop case to the right)
More later.

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