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I am thrilled to host a fellow writer today who has been, not only a steady flowing fountain of furtherment, but a creative character with a reliable routine. Her name is Francis Guenette and she is, by George, a Canadian Author Extraordinaire.

Francis Guenette

Please meet Francis Guenette

Francis Guenette has spent most of her life on the west coast of British Columbia. She lives with her husband and finds inspiration for writing in the beauty and drama of their lakeshore cabin and garden. She has a graduate degree in Counselling Psychology from the University of Victoria, British Columbia, Canada. She has worked as an educator, trauma counsellor and researcher. Francis’ second novel, The Light Never Lies, can be found HERE and her blog, Disappearing In Plain Sight, can be enjoyed through this LINK. She also hosts a facebook page, so please do drop by and say hello!

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The Light Never Lies by Francis Guenette

A Little Teaser for The Light Never Lies:

As circumstances spiral out of control, Lisa-Marie is desperate to return to Crater Lake. The young girl’s resolve is strengthened when she learns that Justin Roberts is headed there for a summer job at the local sawmill. Her sudden appearance causes turmoil. The mere sight of Lisa-Marie upsets the relationship Liam Collins has with trauma counsellor, Izzy Montgomery. All he wants to do is love Izzy, putter in the garden and mind the chickens. Bethany struggles with her own issues as Beulah hits a brick wall in her efforts to keep the organic bakery and her own life running smoothly. A native elder and a young boy who possesses a rare gift show up seeking family. A mystery writer arrives to rent the guest cabin and a former client returns looking for Izzy’s help. Life is never dull for those who live on the secluded shores of Crater Lake. Set against the backdrop of Northern Vancouver Island, The Light Never Lies is a story of heartbreaking need and desperate measures. People grapple with the loss of cherished ideals to discover that love comes through the unique family ties they create as they go.

Francis Guenette works tirelessly to get her work into public view, a sometimes daunting task for us introverted writers. But, as you can see, she has been more than successful in stepping beyond that stigma and letting it go.

Guenette's book in her local supermarket

Guenette’s book in her local supermarket

An tiny Guenette enthusiast

A tiny Guenette enthusiast

Francis is currently running in a blog tour and I am one of the lucky stops. She is offering two trade paperback copies of The Light Never Lies, mailed right to the lucky winners door. One copy goes to the blog host who garners the most engagement with his or her post on Francis, and one to a commenter whose name will be drawn from a communal commenter hat compiled from all across the tour.

 

She has written a post especially for my blog, so I’m excited for you to read it below and share your thoughts…

 

Let the Story Go

I am thankful for this opportunity to appear on Hazy’s blog. As my second novel, The Light Never Lies, makes its inaugural way out into the world, I decided to focus my guest post on the fear we writers have when we must put our work into the realm of the reader. I’m here to tell you, it doesn’t seem to get any easier.

I often write with the radio playing in the background. Now and then something grabs my attention. The other day a few words jumped out and I jotted them down on a scrap of paper. No matter what you’re trying to create – if you’re not scared you’re not really doing it.

This message is a bitter pill for a writer. We must face our fears about letting the story go. We must send our work out into the world where people will judge and horrors of all horrors, maybe not even understand what we’re trying to say – a scary prospect, indeed.

There is no way around this dilemma. If we want to write a story that means anything, other people will have to read it. French philosopher, Paul Ricoeur wrote extensively about the art of interpreting written text. He tells us that the act of fixing anything in writing is the beginning of that story’s journey away from the meanings the author may have intended. The story is freed from the one who created it and enters the field of interpretation – the land of readers.

There is a vital reason why writers must let their stories go. You see, my fellow quaking with fear writers, stories matter. As human beings, we have a driving urge to tell and understand stories. It is our way of making sense of the world. Telling a story lets us drag the threads of our life backward in reflection and forward as we construct new ways of interacting with one another and our world. Each story becomes a bell echoing out past the storyteller.

Here is a call to action, my friends – as the Bard would say, screw your courage to the sticking post and put those stories out there. Cut the apron strings, I say. Let the readers do their job of interpretation through the lens of their own unique experience. In this way, our words will bounce away, leading others to thoughts, places and insights we could never have imagined.

I hope you’ve enjoyed Francis’ post today and that you’ll show her the support she needs to continue weaving stories that entertain our hearts and souls. After all…

If a nation loses its storytellers, it loses its childhood.

~ Peter Handke

 

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This is the second of two quick posts in a row, neither of them are worth any more of your time than what I’ve put into them…which totals mere minutes…but today is a day I’d like to mark despite having to steal the time do it, and you never know, maybe you have a few minutes to spare.

I started my blog on March 30, 2012. So far, I am enjoying it immensely and as of today, I have organically grown exactly 400 hundred followers. I am not including facebook or twitter peeps – simply the people that I have, post by WordPress post, managed to entice into my lair as magically as the Pied Piper. Okay – there’s been nothing magical about it. It’s all been blood,sweat and tears, nevertheless, I maintain that I’ve performed a miraculous miracle. At least, it feels that way to me.

Hazy's 400

So, to mark the occasion and include you in what I feel is something to celebrate, I’d like to send the very first person to both like and comment on this post, a book that USA Today refers to as; “A fascinating look at the evolution and redemption of one of the hardest-working storytellers today.” 

Take it and....GO!

Take it and….GO!

 Relatives and employees of Hazy Shades of Me prohibited from winning.  ;0)

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I know what you’re thinking. This blog is nebulous no more. It’s hastily becoming crystal clear that Hazy is hog-tied by the harrows of her habitat. She seems to be engulfed in the epic endeavors that go along with, well, existing.

You’re only half right. Yes, it’s true. I have found comfort in crafting cunning (at least I think so) tales of ballsy baristas, bereaved bowsers and bursting brains, but I’ve also been writing. Not dysentery dribble, but writing, making things up out of thin air, fabricating fairy tales, staging stories…working my Wonder Woman.

And, I have proof. The other day, after reading through a bunch my past blogs and realizing that most things I write are…for lack of a softer adjective…shite, I received an email telling me that I’ve made it through the first round of judging in another writing contest.

Sometimes I do believe in that higher power. The one that looks out to the turbulent waters, sees you’re drowning and tosses you a floatie in the form of a new follower, a generous comment or sometimes, a glimmer of those very specific affirmations we writers inadvertently crave ~ conspicuous creds.

While I’d love to share the black and white of it all, certain contests forbid submission of works that have been published in any way, including via personal blogs. Makes a blogger feel important, doesn’t it?

So, in the meantime, let’s talk about how much cream cheese I found when cleaning out my far-too-long forgotten fridge.

Cream Cheese

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