Isn’t there something about a story that touches you deep in your soul in a genuine way? You know the ones I’m talking about. Some books and movies put you on the receiving end of heart words or they make you wish—make you want—to be the one standing there and listening to the love of your life saying, “I love you, I need you”.

For me a book just doesn’t have that, I’ll never forget this book touch unless there are true feelings between two people or characters. The love can be physical or platonic. I’m a romantic and I keep wondering what happened to me. I mean, I’m a guy and I’m not supposed to fall for these kinds of books and movies.

I do enjoy action, thrillers, fantasies—which often have those scenes I crave—and most any genre for a good read and to see how an author pulls it all together. But my most memorable reads are heart touching books with heart words that leave me smiling or even crying. Yes, I have been known to cry. Not often. How ’bout them Bears!

I read that Nicholas Sparks was given a hard time for being a man and writing romance novel by his fellow writers. Having sold millions of copies of his books I would think that no one could or would give him a bad time now.

Is it hard to write scene that touch a reader and possibly leave them with tears or a smile? If you write it like you are there and say it the way you would like to hear it and don’t be restricted by a stone hard plot line, then the answer is yes. I believe any genre of books need something to touch the reader in the heart even in the most desperate of situations. I’ve known men; tough ones, who would never be caught crying or showing their sensitive side get up and leave the room when heart words find them. That’s a good thing to know that these harden, straight line people know what it means to feel.

Several years ago I wrote a book for my grandson to try and help him through the hard times of his life to come. I have tried on a number of occasions to read it aloud to my wife and others and I just can’t do it. I guess I’m a sap for heart words.

What does it take to make a book unforgettable for you?

Every person out there is the rarest of all diamonds- Nicholas Sparks

Tyler Hill's Decision newest book cover - 12-07-11

 Tyler Hill’s Decision


A Writing Challenge- from Karen

I’ve accepted a challenge from Karen at Karensdifferentcorners and it came at a perfect time for me. I needed a push to make my fingers and mind work together again. The challenge is to write a short story or scene as Dialog only, Description only and A combination of both. It’s a very interesting way to practice different disciplines.

Forgive me if I’m a bit rusty, but this practice has made me smile. Please enjoy and comment—good or bad, lol.  Thank you, Karen- what a great exercise!

If I have to pick a title for this scene—Afternoon Delight


Image from freestock at Dreamstime




“Sirilak, why do you work so hard?”

“Soon the dry season will be here and the baby will come in a month. We must have enough food for our family, Anan. Don’t worry, I rest often.”

“You must let me help. I’ve finished the new room for our first born.”

“You are such a good husband. My life would be so hard without you.”

“Ha. Is this what you call an easy life? It is I who is lucky to be the husband of such a beautiful woman. You will be the best mother to our son.”

“You are so sure our child will be a boy. I think a girl would be auspicious and there will be more children. You are energetic in your work.”

“Hush woman. What if our neighbors hear you speak so openly about our private life.”

“The women would be jealous and the men might try harder to please their wives. But I will keep my voice low because I don’t want one of the ladies to try and find out for themselves.”

“I’m hungry. It’s time to do your other wifely duties!”

“That was the best fish soup I’ve ever had and you… I enjoy the way you look while you carry our child.”

“Stop that, Anan. When you touch me so I forget that I look like an elephant and it is hours before dark. I don’t want you to see the fat woman I am now.”

“Sirilak, you’re not fat. You are the essence of beauty. Perhaps a special dessert will put me in the mood to help you in the garden. After all the sun is too hot for you to do any hard work now.”

“My love. I will help you prepare the dessert.”


Anan stood in the shade of a tamarind tree watching Sirilak, his wife, working in the garden. Her tiny body had grown so big with the coming of their first child he worried that she might do them both harm working in the burning sun. He knew his words must be gentle as he looked on, filled with the love for his woman. She worried about the coming dry season and the extra mouth that would have to be fed.

They had only a small plot of land but every centimeter was used to their benefit. He still watched in wonder at how the most beautiful girl of their village had picked him for her husband.

Anan walked out in the field and began to work alongside Sirilak and nudged her a bit just to have her look at him. He loved looking in her dark depthless eyes that shown so bright when they turn to him.   She smiled as he rubbed his stomach, indicating his hunger.

Sirilak’s laughter filled him with joy. She rose and pulled him to his feet and then propelled him toward the house. She looked with pride at the new room that he had just finished. Her choice of Anan as her husband was helped by her grandmother. Love had blossomed from the very first day and she said her special prayer of thanks for selecting the perfect man.

He reached out to rub her heavy belly and bent to kiss her, but she pushed him away and then looked around to be sure the neighbors had not been watching. He reached for her again, but she slapped his hand and held up a finger as she waddled faster to the house.

Sirilak watched him eat as if there would be no more food for the evening meal and laughed.

Anan felt his heart flutter at the thrill of her laughter and reached out for her. This time she came willingly and purred at his touch.

There would be a special dessert as she pulled him toward their sleep area.

Dialog and description:

The sun’s rays shimmered off the ground as Anan watched his wife from the shadows of a nearby tamarind tree. He walked out in the field and said, “Sirilak. You shouldn’t be out in this sun. You must think of our child growing within you.”

“It is our child that I am thinking of. We must be ready for the dry season. I feel fine and you’ve been working so hard on the new room. You can’t do all the work! What kind of wife would I be to sit while there is work to be done?” She sat back, wiping the sweat from her brow and gazed up at the man she loved. He was so strong and fit, but even in her condition she wouldn’t allow him to coddle her. It wasn’t her way or the way of the village.

Anan lifted her to her feet and placed a loving hand on her swollen belly and tried to sneak a kiss, but she pushed him away with a laugh. “Are you worried about what the neighbors might say? I will tell them I am kissing my son through my wife.”

“Always so sure our little one will be a boy. I would think a girl will bring good fortune to our house… besides, with all your attention our family will be large.” The look on his face caused her to laugh and hug his arm. “Not that I’m complaining, my love. You fill me with love when you touch me.”

“I have married a wanton woman,” he said with a smile that stretched across his face. “I need my wife to feed her man so he will have the energy to try and satisfy her needs.” He gave her a nudge towards the house and then reached for her again but only caught the sweet tinkle of her laughter.

Anan settle back in his chair with a full belly and as he always did when he turned his eyes on Sirilak he gave thanks for his luck and her love. As she moved to clear the table he reached out and pulled her to his lap. She did not resist and purred as he hand rubbed her swollen belly and kissed her neck. He knew just the spot that would make her want more.

She stood and pulled him to his feet, pressing her body to him. “I think a special dessert shall be your reward for loving me, husband.”

The end.

 I hope you enjoyed these different styles. It’s good practice for any writer to stay within a discipline to see where one may need some additional practice.

I’m supposed to pick three more people to continue this contest, but what I’ve decided is: If anyone wishes to join in, please do. I really would enjoy seeing what other writers come up with. Try to go outside your normal style. Since I’m a genre hopper it didn’t work well for me.

Post your writing at your web site and then post the link in the comments on this post and at Karen’s site. I look forward to some good reading.

Spotlight Post by Laurie Jenkins


Laurie Jenkins has done a great Spotlight Post about my bestselling book, IN SEARCH OF A SOUL, along with an excerpt and background info. Laurie is a true supporter of indie authors and I hope you’ll show your support by visiting her great site. Spotlight.

The photo you’ll see of me is with my grandson, Tyler Hill– one of the many loves of my life!

The Awards Are Piling Up

I’ve won another blog award! The Fabulous Blog Ribbon! This great honor was given to me by Karen at http://karensdifferentcorners.wordpress.com . Please check out Karen’s blog and books. She does reviews, interviews, brings in great guest blogger and is so supportive!

For this award I am to tell 5 Fabulous moments, 5 things I love, 5 things I hate and then nominate 5 more Fabulous friends! 5 is one of my many lucky numbers so here goes:


  1. Finding out love-at-first-sight is real. I can honestly say that seeing my future wife for the first time was a real soul-mate kind of love. We could barely speak to one another. She’s from Thailand and when I walked into her little shop in Bangkok… well, it was all over for me. After 36 years of marriage, I think she’s finally coming around to loving me back.
  2. I’ll combine three into one: Seeing my children for the first time, each time, scared the crap out of me because they put their trust in me to be a good dad. I hope I did okay.
  3. Stepping off the plane after returning from war and seeing my family waiting and so happy to see me.
  4. Finding out that the Social Media was not a thing to fear and meeting so many wonderful people I now call friends—real friends!
  5. Publishing my novels and watching as readers bought and actually liked what I wrote was a piece of apple pie(with cream on top) for my soul.

Things I love:

  1. The moments I mentioned above.
  2. People. As a self-proclaimed recluse you make it hard for me to stay in hiding.
  3. The Sea. I lived in the Marshall Islands, on a very small island, for 2 years and the sea was everywhere I looked and I’m pretty sure some of the salt is still in my blood.
  4. Writing puts me in a place that allows me to be someone else and live lives I could only dream of. It also keeps me sane—an important fact for my family.
  5. Reading—for the same reason as above.

Things I hate:

  1. This is a tough one. I’ve found through living that hate is an emotion that only sucks the life out of the hater. So maybe hating hate—does that make sense?
  2. I used to have a great dislike for other drivers, but living in Thailand has taught me to join in and have fun. It’s also taught me patience.
  3. Politics. In today’s world it’s all about popularity. We can get trodden down and still turn around a vote for the person because of the magic lies that come out or how they look or even because we afraid to voice an opinion that doesn’t run with the crowd. No matter where you live.
  4. Narrow-minded thought.
  5. Stubbing my toe!


This is hard because I could nominate so many great bloggers. So if I pick you don’t get mad—just be happy like the people I didn’t pick! And I’m going international because the world deserves this award. Please take the time to check these great people out—you’ll find new friends!

  1. Sandra Valente http://ssbookfanatics.blogspot.com/ Sandra is a book reviewer living in South Africa. She is so supportive of writers. I’ve also gotten to know Sandra on a personal level—with the approval of her black belt husband. She is funny, caring and has a great family!
  2. Suletta. http://suletta.com/  She is a South African living with her family in Zanzibar, operating a dairy farm. Frist, just reading about someone living in Zanzibar—I mean come on! I have childhood memories of strange, magical places and just saying the name gives me a thrill. But the best part is Suletta’s blog about life and views from this incredible place. I’ve only been following her for a short time but have already found out how much she and her family love and care about the people in beautiful Zanzibar—had to say it one more time.
  3. Eden Baylee from Canada http://edenbaylee.wordpress.com/ Now, Eden is really a special friend and I feel so lucky to have met her. She’s also one of the busiest people I know, but only a little of her efforts are for her. She is the most supportive person I know; helping independent authors, friends in need and just doing all she can to see things through. She’s also an erotic writer! She has opened my eyes to the world of writers in this genre. She is a world class writer!
  4. Virginia Lee http://dagonsblood.wordpress.com Virginia is from the States and is another person I consider amazing—as a writer and friend. She writes Historical Romances and her words take me to long ago Scotland and I love it there. She too is supportive and caring. Do you see a theme developing?
  5. Robert (Sharky) Pruneda  http://sharkbaitwrites.com/ I threw Sharky in so you wouldn’t think all I thought about are women—did it work? Just kidding. Rob is at the top of my list of bloggers who writes novels, great blogs and supports others in so many ways! Find him on Twitter and have a laugh or two with him. He’s almost too witty for me.
  6. Lisa M. Stull (LM Stull) http://lmstull.com/  Okay, I’m adding one more just because I’m so impressed that this talented writer talks to me once in a while and she happens to be another beautiful lady. And the very fact that I know what the M stands for in her name! Honestly, when I first started reading Lisa’s blog I was in awe of her talent and not a little afraid of her. I would comment and Tweet with trepidation in the hopes she wouldn’t see me—she’s that powerful. As it turns out she is also so sweet and kind and it thrills me when see turns her eyes my way. Her books, poetry and blog are treats to behold. Did I mention her support is amazing.

I hope you’ll check all of the great people and their sites out. For all the people that I left off this list, please keep your thank you emails to 500 words—I’m a busy guy, lol!

Life on the Farm in Thailand

Tapioca harvest and me

I have a big announcement to make—but not today. I feel bad about ignoring my blog for so long. I’ve actually been busy with my writing but that’s a poor excuse—since a blog is about writing.

Our little farm is the one thing that brings me back to earth when I don’t seem to have any time. Plants have their own schedule and no manner of prodding, enticing, rushing about or pleading will hurry them along. It’s a lesson I’m trying to learn. As the pressure builds in what I do all I have to do is walk out to our plants and listen. They whisper and chatter and are happy to see me. They ask for nothing but love and care and offer sustenance and beauty in return. I come away from the fields, having left the weight of my problems in the deep rich soil, and I feel relaxed in a way that always makes me smile.

We don’t have some great expanse of land but we use every centimeter in hopes we return goodness back to the earth and gain pleasure in watching neighbors and others enjoy the products of our labors.

If I were better at manipulating my webpage I would offer many more photos of Life on the Farm. I have a way with words—or so I think— but the magic world of the internet is still… magic to me. I seat like a child and watch the wonders of things that seem impossible appear right before my eyes.

Please enjoy a few pictures of some of the things we grow and I hope you can see the contentment on my face.

Julee and the two headed pineapple

Jackfruit and me


Kids love to watch the tapioca being harvested