My Writing Corner

A walk on the wild side

My love of squirrels isn’t a secret to most people I know. I’ve been called the squirrel whisperer by many of my loved ones. It takes a while for these beautiful and excitable creatures to trust me, but once they do, we have made a connection.

There are about eleven squirrels now that I’m feeding. 3 years ago, I had 2. Yes, they talk and spread the news of the wealth of tasty treats in my backyard. I make homemade nutrition bars for them, which they love. They also get apple and pear cores that are refrigerated during the hot summer months for a cool and juice treat.

And yes, they all have names. They are my pets and like all pet owners, you give your furry ones a name. They each have their personality, or a characteristic, or sometimes unfortunately a flaw or injury that makes them unique. Stitch has his right ear split down the middle. Smudge has a very large black nose. Tim (trouble I make) well you can figure that one out for yourself.

Every morning I have my coffee on the back patio, and they join us for breakfast. Between the squirrels, butterflies, hummingbirds, bees, and at current count 63 species of birds, they have kept me sane during the lockdown and pandemic. Watching them going about their morning routines not know about the pandemic gives me a sense of hope, or at least, a sense of normal.

I belong to numerous wildlife associations, preservation groups, you name it, I’ve probably contributed in some way to help support our wildlife. Let’s face it, they were here long before us. We’ve invaded their homes and their spaces. I feel it’s time we give back to them.

Keep an eye out under this category “coffee with squirrels” for interesting tidbits, and articles about preservation and habitat work that’s going on. I’ll even share links in ways in which you can help. These posts are for the creatures that can’t speak for themselves. I want to be their voice.

Garlic and Onion Free Cooking

For those who know me or have experienced my cooking, then you’ll know that I never use any foods in the Allium family. (Onions, garlic, chives, shallots, leeks, etc…) Yeah, I know what you’re thinking, trust me. I used to be just like you. I lived on the stuff. Alas my partner of 24 years, has an intolerance to these ingredients, so I’ve had to adapt and adjust all my recipes.

After all these years you know what? I wouldn’t have it any other way. Food is so much better without these ingredients. You can taste everything down to the herbs and salt and pepper. There is no better way to cover up the taste of food than by using onions and garlic. Trust me. I’ve never enjoyed food more, and I feel better as well.

To share my love of not living in the world of the Allium family, I will be sharing some of my favorite recipes with you. You’ll have to trust me. You’ll never miss what’s not there. I’ll provide tips and tricks to get the most flavor out of your ingredients and share some of my secret blends of rubs and spices to enjoy for yourself.

From my table to yours. Happy eating.

Malinae by Josh Schlossberg

Josh Schlossberg has done something very few people have done. He’s created not only a gripping and terrifying story but has done so with characters in their eighties. It’s a heartbreaking love story as Ward watches his wife of fifty years slip further into dementia. It’s a story many of us can relate to. But there’s something deeper at play in Josh’s story. With expert craft, he turns the tides on the reader as Ward discovers there is more to his wife’s dementia, and it isn’t human.

The story is intricate and woven together beautifully. Josh is a master storyteller, and Malinae is the proof.

This is a story that will tug at your heart on many levels. Highly recommended.

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New Beginnings

After 23 years of writing and over 100 published works it feels strange to talk about new beginnings. That’s where I’m at. This, my first blog post on my new online presence. Along with writing, I’ve been working to rebuild my writing after several years away.

I’ve not stopped writing. That will never happen (until I’m dead – and even then, who knows). To be honest, I’ve not been eager to jump back into the world of publishing. There were some nasty experiences that held me back. A publisher publishing my work without a signed contract. A publisher who told me that my novella was too “gay,” and “they couldn’t afford to upset their readers,” whatever that means. And to be honest, there wasn’t any romance or gay sex. The two main characters happened to be boyfriends. That was the extent of the “gay.”

These negative experiences derailed my writing. I admit it. I let them. I gave up trying to publish even with the awards and accolades of some of my published works. I’ve even received the rights back to all my work, which has allowed me to feel a sense of renewal and rebirth.

So, here’s to my first post, and many more to come. I hope anyone reading this and future ramblings can find something useful to take away. I promise not to bore you with mundane life stuff. This is my writing life, and I promise to keep it that way. The good, the bad, and the ugly.

With thanks for keeping a watchful eye. So long as you don’t stalk me. Okay, you can stalk. Go ahead.