Pirate Party

4 08 2010

One of the dangers of researching a book is that you stumble across fascinating information that has nothing to do with your topic. Or it’s connected to your topic, but can’t be used. I have a bad habit of getting sidetracked, and here’s one of my recent forays into the world of pirates.

I was fascinated to discover that there’s a new political party that’s taken off in many countries. Ever heard of the Pirate Party? Yep, they actually have candidates, some of whom have won elections. It started in Sweden, but it’s spread to Germany and about 14 other European countries. And Canada now has one too.

Led by young tech-savvy voters,  PPI (Pirate Parties International) members support free sharing of intellectual property. As the Canadian Pirate Party leader, Jake Daynes, a 19-year-old video-game-design student, says, “We think that for the dissemination of culture — music, books, movies, you name it — that should be [considered] fair use.” They also want more government transparency as well as no patents on pharmaceuticals or software.

Interesting concepts… It would certainly reduce Internet piracy if all the copyrighted material were available free. It seems many of the younger generation are ready to embrace it, even those who design video games and create software. Then all countries and individuals would have equal access. Maybe the next step would be to compensate those who design intellectual property–including artists, musicians, writers, and inventors–the way we compensate our sports figures.

It seems the Pirate Party is gaining a foothold around the world. Here’s a list of places that either have or are starting a Pirate Party:

Bosnia and Herzegovina
Czech Republic
New Zealand
South Africa
United Kingdom
United States

Quote from: Barber, Mike. “Pirate Party of Canada Calls for Canadian Copyright Reform,” National Post, May 1, 2010.

Want to Channel Past Lives?

3 09 2009

Book Three_The Scorpions StrkieCool cover, huh? Makes you eager to pick up Book 3, doesn’t it? Wonder what it’s about?

Well, if you want to find out, go to:


Written by C.L. Talmadge, this is the third in the series Green Stone of Healing®, a speculative epic that features four generations of strong-willed female characters who inherit a mysterious green gem ultimately revealed to mend broken bones and broken hearts, protect against missiles, and render its wearers undetectable.

And check out the other terrific covers below.

I was lucky enough to snag C.L. Talmadge

for an interview. So you can learn more about her vision, her writing, and the therapy that has allowed her to capture these stories on paper.

Book Two_Fallout So here’s some intimate information on C.L.:

When did you first dream of being a writer and what steps did you take to follow your dream?

I had dreamed of being a writer since about 1966-67, when the mother of my best friend put a Taylor Caldwell novel in my hand and told me, “You can write a book like this.”

After college I decided to become a journalist, just like a lot of other graduates in the mid-1970s, immediately following the Watergate scandal. But I eventually found work on newspapers, magazines, and even a newswire. I honed my skills at writing on deadline. That has been very useful in writing fiction because I know how to write the most possible in between working a “day” job. It helped cure me of “writer’s block,” a luxury you don’t have when your editor is glaring at you just minutes before deadline.

What do you find most challenging about being a writer? What do you love most?

The biggest challenge in writing fiction is to convey the depth of my characters’ feelings. Words are so inadequate when describing the intensity and range of human emotions. That is always my greatest struggle.

The biggest challenge in writing nonfiction is to be as clear, concise, and lucid as possible in laying out my case or making my arguments. Book One_The Vision

What do I love about writing? To me, writing is sort of like breathing. Got to keep on doing it to live. I don’t know if that qualifies as what I love most about writing. It’s much more like an obsession.

In addition to writing, what are your other passions and why?

Healing and politics are my other passions. I regard them as closely connected. Being emotionally and spiritually wounded for so much of my early life, I always had an interest in healing. Western medicine has nothing for anything but physical wounds, and I wanted answers for the non-physical, or metaphysical. So I looked for them for myself, found ones that made sense to me, and they are very much a part of my fiction and nonfiction alike. For politics, I write columns syndicated by North Star Writers Group (www.northstarwriters.com) and I blog as StoneScribe (www.healingstonebooks.com/stonescribe).

Candace-large What characters in your books are most like you and why?

Certain characters in my books are me. I mean that most literally. I believe in reincarnation, and I believe I once lived a life as Helen Andros, the first-generation heroine of my series, and another subsequent life as Helen’s granddaughter. As the friend of Helen’s mother says about her in the second book, “She can keep her legs shut, but not her lips.” Ditto for me. Just like Helen, I always have an opinion. Unlike Helen, I have learned to deliver my opinions with a bit more tact these days. Just a bit, however. Don’t want to take this tact thing too far.

What stumbling blocks have you encountered and how have you overcome them?

My major stumbling block to become a fiction writer was my own emotional and spiritual wounds. I spent my early adult years looking for healing and found it in a powerful method called Sunan therapy. I co-authored nonfiction about this approach to healing emotional and spiritual wounds called Hope is in the Garden: Healing Resolution Through Unconditional Love. After 12 years of Sunan therapy on an as-needed basis, the past-life memories that form this series came roaring back to my conscious mind, and I started writing.

What comes first in your writing process? A scene, characters, title? Are you a plotter?

Character comes first, last, and always for me. The first rule for all writers of any kind of fiction: Know thy character(s)! If a writer does not know her characters intimately, she will not know how they will react to meeting the hero or in any other circumstances. Not knowing the characters is the problem behind so many poor movies/novels that are all “high concept” and no substance.

I knew the ending of this story when I first set out to write the series back in 1998. So what plotting I do involves determining what events I am going to include in the books and how to order these events into chapters. I have far too much material in my head ever to use completely.

Where do you get your ideas? And what do you do if your muse decides to take a vacation?

My ideas come from my experiences, both in this lifetime and others. Past lives are a rich source of ideas for novels. I believe that writers like Taylor Caldwell tapped their own past lives for some if not all of their novels, too.

My muse does not dare take a vacation. It has too much deadline training to do that. If I stop writing, it’s because I am having emotional difficulties with the events I am about to put down on paper. I have run into this a number of times because the lives I lived as Helen and her granddaughter were very painful and powerful. Their power has affected me to this day. The pain I resolve through an alternative approach called Sunan therapy (mentioned above). It’s an ongoing process that shapes my life and my writing every day.

Can you tell us a bit about what you’re working on now?

I am finalizing the series’ fourth book, Outcast, for publication on Oct. 1. I am two-thirds of the way through the first draft of the fifth book in my series. Its working title is Treachery.  And I am always churning out weekly political columns and occasional blogs.

Here’s  some exciting news and a special offer from C.L.:

The fourth in the series, Outcast, will be published Oct. 1. Vote for the first book, The Vision, through Sept. 25 and get a free e-book on healing, love, and spirituality. Details at C.L.’s blog: www.healingstonebooks.com/stonescribe.

Thanks so much for joining us today, C.L. The series sounds wonderful. And I’d love to learn more about Sunan therapy. Maybe you could pop back again sometime to enlighten us. I also forgot to ask one important question. Who is the artist of your fab covers?

Readers, you also have an opportunity to win the books. One lucky commenter on C.L.’s blog tour will be getting a set of books. Interested? Why don’t you tell us: do you ever feel as if you are channeling a past life as you write?

Surprise Visit

30 08 2009

book-cover-banner-VBT-GREEN-STONE I’ll be having another guest author.  C.L. Talmadge will be popping by to discuss her latest book on September 4. So stop back for the surprise visit.

Candace will be giving away an autographed set of all three books in the series to one randomly drawn commenter from the tour, so come have your say.

“Exceptional job of writing, and keeping this story tightly together in a genre that is certainly difficult to do such, our author is top-notch,” Shirley P. Johnson writes about Fallout in Midwest Book Review. “If you love an intense read, packed with sinister power seekers, grueling heartless characters, yet laced with mystical moments, the lure of peace and healing, and the hope that goodness will prevail, this read is for you.”

The Green Stone of Healing® fictional epic explores what happens when politics and piety collide in an island nation called Azgard. Theocrats plot to impose total control over Azgard but end up destroying their country and much of the rest of the world. The series portrays four generations of strong-willed heroines who use their mysterious gem to offer a healing, inclusive alternative to the hate-filled bigotry of religious tyrants. Books One through Three are released, with the release of Book Four to be announced.