October is a time for spooks and scares and…
new releases!

It’s been ten years in the making, but I’m finally sharing my collection of thirteen thrilling short stories inspired by phobias with the reading world.

Fear is a complex emotion.
A phobia is fear on steroids.
Bigger. Badder. Brutal.

In these stories, you will read about phobias.
Some you know, some you don’t, some you suffer.
Some you enjoy.
We don’t judge.

Foe Be Us : Phobias

 1. A Nice Guy ~ A story that speaks to the esteem of the reader. Have you ever felt invisible? Unworthy? Afraid that no one will remember you? Athazagoraphobia is the fear of being forgotten.

2. Just Breathe ~ This one speaks to me! I get breathy every time I read it. Claustrophobia is the fear of suffocation.

Continue reading

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A Wee bit o’ Arlen

Arlen, that’s what the natives say. That’s how it sounded to this visitor, anyway.
Pronunciation aside, wow, what a fabulous country!

We were in Ireland for nine very full days. Overwhelming–hundreds of photos! I’ve had a few weeks to consider how best to present the awesome trip without causing your eyes to glaze over. Who remembers the “vacation slide shows” of the 60’s?! I don’t, lol, but I’m familiar with the reference.

I want to keep this simple. Keep you wanting MORE.
Nine days.
Nine quick entries…
(but not all, trust me, not nearly close to all)

Continue reading

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Happy Birthday to me!

For those of you who have the day off work (teachers and mail carriers, mostly), YOU’RE WELCOME!

I encourage you to eat cake today.
I’ll be eating cake, and even though we’re far apart, it will be kind of like we are together.






No presents, please. Your presence in my life is gift enough.







If you would like to do something nice in honor of my birthday…
Pick up a little something…







Seriously, you should TOTALLY treat yourself to a new book!





Five titles to choose from
Safe Harbour
Kinder Garden
Baker’s Dozen
A Stranger’s Child
Pocket Money

Get them ALL
You are worth it.








And help me have a very happy birthday. 😀





Aw, thanks.

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Introducing Safe Harbour!

It’s been a longer haul than I anticipated when I was prepping this novel for Kindle Worlds release in June. You know, before they CLOSED Kindle Worlds and I had to seriously consider how to handle the characters in my new book.

Safe Harbour is now the second entry to MY Kimmie Jillison Mystery SERIES!
After being ghost-free for most of her life, Kimmie Jillison has her second run-in when she meets an attentive and attractive amnesiac ghost while visiting her father’s grave. As she delves into solving the mystery of who he is, where he’s come from, and how he died, Kimmie discovers he may be the key to finding a missing person. The handsome ghost also proves to be one more complication in her already crowded love life.

Quick recap for those unfamiliar–
Kindle Worlds invited established authors to open their world to other writers. At the urging of Christine Cacciatore, I selected Terri Reid’s Mary O’Reilly series because I had read most of her books already, I enjoyed the style and characters, and I know Terri personally. I submitted two books, Kinder Garden, which introduced MY characters into Mary’s world, and Baker’s Dozen which featured Mary as the main character.

At first, I was devastated with the closure news. Kindle Worlds had been good to me! But after KW shut down, Terri kindly provided permission to those who had published through her to republish those stories on our own.

The best part?!


Kindle World stories were, obviously, Kindle only. But now, with the titles returning to me, I can put them out in print. And I did.

Not only is the NEW release, Safe Harbour, available in digital and print, but so are the original MOR World stories!

You can order them by clicking on the highlighted titles.
Baker’s Dozen
Kinder Garden
Safe Harbour

And don’t forget to #OrderReadReview
A Stranger’s Child and
Pocket Money!


You can purchase them in person at the Somonauk Library Local Author Fair!
I will be there selling and signing with other amazing authors. Come support local writers and stock up for your winter reading!
Saturday, October 20, 1 pm to 5 pm, 700 East LaSalle St., Somonauk, IL 60552

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Literary Mary Chats with A.E. Field

For the September Chat, I am proud to introduce you to friend and fellow author Amy Field. Amy and I are members of Hi-Rev Writers. We retreat annually for several days of…HI REV WRITING! (It’s a very productive time.)

A. E. Field spent her childhood nestled in the mountains of Virginia, daydreaming and taking her barbies on epic adventures. In her high school and college years, she decided to take some adventures of her own, traveling to over six countries in a matter of a few years. Now, she resides in northwestern Illinois and her adventures are those of family, life, and the stories in her head.

When A. E. Field isn’t writing, she loves to read, spend time with her hubby and kiddos, and paint. Her writing buddies keep her laughing loudly and often and always give her excellent advice. Her favorite things include hoodies, homemade meals, rainy days, and lots of chocolate and scones.

Mrs. Field loves a good dystopian novel. She also has a fetish for swords, action, and a little splash of romance. She’s a sucker for an unpredictable twist and absolutely goes to midnight releases like a star struck fan! Whether a movie, a play, a book, or even a spoken tale, there’s nothing like a good story.

 1. I’ve known you as a friend and published author for several years, but I’d like to introduce you to my reading audience. Tell us a bit about yourself.

First of all, thanks for interviewing me, Mary. It’s a real pleasure to be a featured author on your site. Hello to all that are tuning in!

My name is Amy Field, but I publish under the pen name of A. E. Field. There’s not a huge story behind the pen name. I didn’t want to publish under my full name, so I went with my initials. I also thought it sounded better aesthetically.

I grew up in the mountains of Virginia in a small town called Vinton. After high school, I went to college in Texas, with a short overseas stint in Romania, then moved to northwestern Illinois after meeting my husband, Tim. We’ve been married for almost seventeen years and have two wonderful children­–Allie, who is twelve and Noah, who is fifteen. Being a wife and mother is the best! I wouldn’t change anything except to slow down time. My kids are growing up awfully fast!

I’ve done a little bit of everything in the work world from waitressing to missionary work. I spent a considerable amount of time working in a copy and print center and most recently I’ve been employed as a laboratory secretary. Every job has been a learning experience and each one has been useful in my journey as an author.

 2. I happen to know (and love) the reasons you became an author. Please share.

I became an author to show my kids that they could do anything they put their minds to. When I first started writing, I had just finished reading the third book in the Eragon series by Christopher Paolini. I loved those books! Then, I found out he was fifteen years old when he started writing the series. And if he could write a book at that age, I figured I could too. So, I took the ideas in my head and began the journey of writing. The further I got into the journey, the more I wanted to inspire my kids to reach for their dreams. I hope publishing these books shows them anything is possible at any age.

 3. You are an avid reader. What are you reading now? What books or authors would you recommend? And how have your favorites influenced you as a writer?

Right now I’m reading Legendary by Stephanie Garber. It’s the sequel to Caraval, her first novel and I love it so far! She is a master of description and her books have such a magical feel.

I tend to lean towards young adult in any genre and historical romance books. Some of my favorite authors are: Julie Kawaga (her Iron Fey Series is amazing), Kristin Cashore, Maggie Steifvater, Marcia Lynn McClure, and Julianne Donaldson. I would recommend any of these authors on any day.

I would describe my books, the Ghost Virus Series, as a mix between the Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins and Divergent by Veronica Roth. Both are great authors and had a huge influence on my writing style. I love the world building in each of these novels and really gathered inspiration from both series. They challenged me to look at the world of the future in several different ways and that made me want to write my own take on it. Each author also had a romance within their books and I appreciated it! I love a juicy piece of romance that doesn’t take over the story but enhances it. That’s exactly what I aimed for in my series.

 4. You’ve recently published book three in the trilogy. Congratulations! What did you learn from writing and publishing Skyla, Metamorphosis, and Sting? What was the most enjoyable aspect; what was the most challenging part?

I learned that writing is fun but also it’s hard! When I first started the series, I was very motivated, but every author knows you eventually hit a wall at some point. It was a lot of writing, editing, then rewriting, and do it all over again. You have an idea of what the process looks like, then you actually do it and find out how wrong you were. My respect for my fellow authors has grown in leaps and bounds since publishing my first book! And writing the second and third book was just as difficult as the first. Each book has a life of its own that you have to build from the ground up. The joy is in creating the life of the book, the pain is in perfecting it.

After three books, I think what I loved the most was my characters. I got to know them inside and out. Finishing their story was like finishing a piece of myself. I will dearly miss them all.

The most challenging part was writing a series as my debut work. Committing to a series is committing to years of work. I don’t think I understood that when I began the process. Now I do.

 5. Besides the obvious marketing for your trilogy, 🙂 , what are you currently working on?

I just began working on a new young adult novel. I’m tentatively calling it The Girl With No Name. I’m in the very beginning stages of world building, but I can tell you I’m gathering influences from India and their culture. It will be an alternate-world novel, but not a current or future version of Earth. It will be a new world entirely.

The main character is a girl who questions her importance and is trying to figure out where she belongs in life. I’m reluctant to say too much more on her yet because I’m still building her personality. For now, I’m enjoying creating new characters, worlds, and situations. Daydreaming is one of my favorite pastimes! I can’t wait to share this new work with everyone and will continue to give updates on my Facebook page and website as the book takes shape.

Thank you for your time and insight, Amy, I wish you the best of luck in your writing endeavors!


In celebration of her new release, A.E. Field will be offering Skyla FREE on September 24th and 25th.
We hope you get hooked and read on!


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An Irish Weird List 2018

I am absolutely overwhelmed by all of the fabulous things we did and saw in Ireland. Going through the photos to try and put together a comprehensive blog post proved a bigger challenge than I was up for this Monday morning, so instead, we get the Weird List.

It’s become kind of a thing, these ‘travel weird lists‘. I recently returned from a ten day trip to the Emerald Isle. It was my second visit–you can read the original Irish Weird List here. You’d think that I’d have hit all the weird stuff the first time and a subsequent trip wouldn’t be weird because it’d be familiar. Good news, Weird List fans, there was plenty of new weird stuff!

The qualifications for this list are simple–if at any point, I, or someone in my company, said, “Wow, that was weird,” whatever was referenced became available for consideration.

The poo signs.

Look at the eyes of the child depicted.
There were signs like this all over Dublin. I wondered why they needed notices protecting their kids from dog poo…I looked it up–it’s a thing, they have an entire campaign encouraging pet owners to be responsible because of this poor child’s experience. It’s less funny when you read about that little girl, but it’s still weird. And, unfortunately, not working. We saw a LOT of dogs in Ireland. And also a lot of poo.



Narrow roads and trailers.





The roads can be very narrow in Ireland. Like, very. Two ‘lanes’ of traffic on a one-car wide street. So, it seemed particularly weird to see trailers. The photo is a lone mobile home on a lot off a narrow road, but we passed actual trailer parks. How do they get them there? No, seriously, I’m baffled.

The Pope visit.

The Pope was in Dublin the same weekend we were. Coincidence? Maybe. Inconvenience? Totally. Our Hop on-Hop off bus tours were compromised with the closed roads and extra security. Also, places like the Dublin Castle were not available to visit at all. We did not see him, but several people in our tour group waved as he passed by. I thought it was weird (and financially opportunistic) that they had pop-up Pope shops on every corner.

Failed Dangerous.

After noticing the large L (for learner) and N (for novice) stickers in the car windows, I snapped a pic of this one, because I thought it was weird. Our guide was surprised to see this photo since this car is technically illegal to drive! According to the very strict RSA, Road Safety Authority, if your car does not pass the required testing, it is considered not road worthy and cannot be driven.


Pokemon Sock Torches.








This is beyond weird. I mean, seriously, WTH? After a lovely jaunty ride through the gorgeous grounds of Killarney National Park and Muckross estate, I came across these sock torches tossed in the undergrowth and into a hollowed out stump. No one had any idea where they’d come from or why they were there.

There’s got to be a story here…

Speaking of stories…

The Poison Garden

on the Blarney Castle grounds is one-stop research for a fiction writer! I found it quite interesting how familiar plants can be used in harmful, and homicidal, ways. And a little weird that they provide this information to the masses.










After much consideration and photo file scrolling, I realize I may have to post several Irish Weird Lists. What can I say? It was a very interesting trip…

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There’s no place like Home.

Good morning!
and whew!

After nearly three weeks of travel, I am home.

I visited Ireland. And then had a writer’s retreat in Wisconsin.
I can’t wait to tell you all about it…but today’s post is about being happy to be home.

I am.
Happy to be home.

Travel is GREAT!
I love it, I really do.
There are so many amazing places to visit, sites to see, photos to be taken, people to meet…we live in a pretty cool world in a pretty cool time.

In the past couple of weeks, I have woken up in Dublin, Connemara, Clare, Dingle, Glengarriff, Gougane Barra, and Richland Center, Wis. Each bleary-eyed morning I would wake and have to stop and think, where am I?

That happened this morning, too.
Might take a while to adjust to being a home-body again.

Give me some time to organize my thoughts and photos and then be prepared to be WOWED.

Ireland, damn.
If you haven’t visited, you totally should.
(Just ask anyone who’s been!)

But today I shall enjoy the comforts of home.
(and unpack, do laundry, grocery shop, run errands, love on my pups…)

And maybe


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