Conversations With Characters

charles french words reading and writing


Recently, I was thinking about which 2 or 3 fictional characters I would like to sit down with over coffee, tea, or beer and with whom I would like to have a conversation.  When I first thought about it, I believed it would be an easy choice to make, but then I realized that there were so many that I would have to do this in parts. I would love to have conversations with so many different characters.




For the initial meeting, I thought I would extend an invitation to Merlin from Sir Thomas Malory’s Le Morte D’Arthur, Gandalf from J.R.R.Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings, (not from The Hobbit), and Dumbledore from J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter series to join me over beer, mead, or even butterbeer, if that were preferable at a nice Public House.  I chose  these characters because they are…

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#review #5stars A Ghost and His Gold, by Roberta Eaton Cheadle @RobertaEaton17 #blogtour #mystery #paranormal

Didi Oviatt


I’ve been following Roberta’s blog for some time now, and even read some of her work in a short story compilation – which I absolutely loved. One story in particular really stood out to me,, above all the others in the set even. Ever since then, Roberta has been on my to-read radar. When I read the blurb for this particular story by Ms. Cheadle I nearly jumped from my chair. It’s right up my ally, and I knew that I’d be in for a true masterpiece.

Sure enough, Roberta brought to life a one of a kind paranormal story that’s jam packed rich South African history. I learned a lot of extremely interesting facts about the wars that took place in South Africa in the late 1800’s and early 1900s. So much hardship plagued the people and lands – especially by the hands of the…

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Guest post – Sally Cronin talks about blogging and her books

Robbie's inspiration

Sally Cronin is a wonderful blogger and a huge supporter of the blogging and writing community. Her blog Smorgasbord is styled along the lines of a magazine and she has published numerous books, both fiction and non-fiction.

Welcome, Sally, it is an honour to host you on Robbie’s Inspiration.

Over to Sally

Picture of Sally Cronin

Thanks very much Robbie for your invitation to join you today and for the great questions.

You have a successful blog, Smorgasbord, with a large following.

What gave you the idea of a blogging magazine?

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine
Picture of Smorgasbord Blog Magazine banner

When I began blogging it was to promote a recently released men’s health book, but after a few weeks, I discovered I loved the immediacy of blogging and the response to the posts, and was hooked. It evolved from there as I began to share my other passions.

It was called Consequences…

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Cover Reveal: “Under Twin Suns: Alternate Histories of the Yellow Sun” Edited by James Chambers

Ink Heist

Today we’re excited to bring you a cover reveal for Hippocampus Press‘ upcoming anthology, Under Twin Suns: Alternate Histories of the Yellow Sign, which hits shelves next month! It promises to be a must-read anthology for fans of Weird Fiction and is packed with brand new stories and poems from some of the best authors in the genre. A huge thank you to James Chambers and Hippocampus Press for letting us share this stunning, kickass cover from Aeron Alfrey! Below you can check out the cover, learn more about the collection, and find a pre-order link to snag your copy. Hippocampus Press is also releasing The Harbor Master: Best Weird Stories of Robert W. Chambers simultaneously with Under Twin Suns and you can find that link below as well. 

“I pray God will curse the writer, as the writer has cursed the world with this beautiful, stupendous creation…

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It’s Day 1 of the #RRBC Spotlight Author Blog Tour for #Author, Harriet Hodgson @healthmn1! C’mon by @RRBC_Org @RRBC_RWISA @Tweets4RWISA #RRBCSA #GriefDoodling

Robbie's inspiration

RRBC “Spotlight” Author banner

I am excited to welcome author Harriet Hodgson to Robbie’s Inspiration today as the RRBC “Spotlight” Author for May 2021. Welcome Harriet!

RWISA Rock Star banner featuring author, Harriet Hodgson

Your Favorite Words List

All writers have favorite words. At least, that is my impression. I have a list of favorite words and it keeps growing. The words on the list are there because of meaning or the music of the English language. According to some of the articles I’ve read, English is a language rich with descriptive words. What are some of my favorite words?

















I could go on and on. Though I use many of my favorite words when I’m writing, I don’t over-use them. Take a few moments to think about your favorite words. Why do you…

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Nobody (Movie Review)


By Michael McCarty



Bob Odenkirk

Connie Nielsen

Gage Munroe

& Christopher Lloyd

Rated R

1 hour and 32 minutes

Hutch Mansell (played by Bob Odenkirk who is from TV’s “Better Call Saul” and “Breaking Bad”) is an everyday Joe, working his routine job and living in the suburbs with lovely wife (Connie Nielsen) and two kids. He takes the bus to work everyday and always misses the garbage pick up.

One night things take a dramatic turn, after a home invasion to his house. From there, bullets fly and tires squeal and fists are swinging in this action packed thriller.

There is an old saying that “nobody’s perfect,” this movie is a near perfect blend of action sequences and dramatic character development.

Odenkirk is a very likeable action hero … imagine if Jack Ryan was played by Bill Paxton with Charles Bronson toughness for good measure.

My rating…

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Gypsy Mob : Episode 2 / Don Giletti

Don Giletti stood at the window behind his desk, staring at the darkness outside his mansion. Behind him, the hulking figure of a man stood in one corner of the room, his features obscured. He may have been looking at the third man in the room, the one cowering before Don Giletti’s desk, cradling his right hand. The fingers of this hand were bent at odd angles and the middle finger looked to be pulled from its socket. The man’s breathing was harsh, the only sound in the room. 

“You ‘ave made me displeased wit’ you,” Giletti said, his voice regretful. “De only question left is whether or not to let you walk from here, boasting of your incompetence and lack of consequences.”

“Don Giletti,” the man whispered, straining to speak through a throat swollen by two enormous handprints. “I crave…I beg your pardon. Had I but known the territory…

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Dark Origins – The Legend of Sleepy Hollow

This month, my Dark Origins post focuses on the famous American tale, The Legend of Sleepy Hollow, which features the well known character, Ichabod Crane. The background to this story is rather interesting. Thank you to Kaye Lynne Booth for hosting this post on Writing to be Read.

The Legend of Sleepy Hollow is a gothic story by American author, Washington Irving, and is included in a collection of 34 essays and short stories entitled The Sketch Book of Geoffrey Crayon, Gent.

Cover of The Sketch-Book by Washington Irving from Amazon US

The plot

The Headless Horseman Pursuing Ichabod Crane(1858) byJohn Quidor

The story is set in 1790 in the countryside around the Dutch settlement of Tarry Town, New York. Sleepy Hollow is a secluded glen which is famous for its ghosts and haunting atmosphere.

Ichabod Crane moves to Sleepy Hollow to be the schoolmaster of the…

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Open Book Blog hop – Prologues and Epilogues

This weeks topic is ‘Prologues and Epilogues. Yes or no?’

I have not included either a prologue or an epilogue in any of the books to date. As I only have two full length novels, that doesn’t necessarily mean I never will, but merely that this concept wasn’t useful to me for either of Through the Nethergate or A Ghost and His Gold.

Literary terms describes a prologue as “Some works of literature start with a prologue (pronounced PRO-log), a short introductory section that gives background information or sets the stage for the story to come. The prologue is usually pretty short, maybe a few pages . But it may be the most important section of the story, and if readers skip it they may be lost for the entire story.”

I had a look at a list of the top 12 novels with prologues that worked and I haven’t…

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ANDREI TARKOVSKY’S ‘THE SACRIFICE’ “Don’t be afraid. There’s no such thing as death…”

Wonders in the Dark

 © 2021 by James Clark

      Having tested the waters of the mysterious Andrei Tarkovsky, by way of his film, Solaris (1972), I feel obliged to settle matters that could test the patience of those seriously intent upon appreciating processes of great merit. Braced by the sophisticated genius of the work of Ingmar Bergman, Tarkovsky has chosen to maintain a mysticism—far from supernatural—but clinging to (perhaps confusing) tinctures of mainstream devotion. In the film, Solaris, he takes his directions from Bergman’s films, The Devil’s Eye (1960) and All These Women (1964), where the force of nature pertains to pathos. Not satisfied to contest the weakness at several points of science, Tarkovsky, by way of a form of sleight of hand, installs dead victims of a violence becoming life-like to those now-touched by guilt. A perhaps questionable (though intense) means of challenging the brutality of wayward captains…

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Two pigeons

France & Vincent

balls 014

I remember going to see Les Deux Pigeons many years ago, a ballet re-choreographed by the great Frederick Ashton. As with all Ashton’s work, the choreography is beautiful and delicate, and the young dancers captured the movement of the birds perfectly. The tale draws on La Fontaine’s fable and tells a story of young lovers. The fable itself was inspired perhaps by Horace in his Epistles, and the fact that pigeons and doves mate for life:

And we nod in agreement like old familiar doves.
You guard the nest: I praise the streams and woods
And the mossy rocks of a beautiful countryside.

Driving home from my son’s today I saw the saddest of sights. High on the top of a street lamp were two pigeons… ring doves… playing out a tragedy equal to any written.

One was, quite obviously, dead; the lifeless form unmoving on the top of…

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