Welcome to Life at Bugle Hill Farm

Monday, September 19, 2011

Interview with author Patty Wiseman

Today I welcome author Patty Wiseman. "An Unlikely Arrangement" is Patty's debut novel and is available now online.  Please visit the link below for more information and to read some of Patty's other work.
Welcome Patty, and thank you for being my guest today.

   For the uninitiated, please describe your genre.
First of all, thank you Joanie for having me!  I guess I would describe my genre as romantic suspense.  I love an old-fashioned romance and I love mystery, so I’ve tried to intertwine the two.
 The story is set in  1920’s Detroit. How did you become interested in this time period?
As a child, I was always fascinated by the stories I heard of m y grandparents on my father’s side of the family. Their marriage was arranged. Unfortunately, my grandfather died in a fire when my dad was only 10 months old. My grandmother left the area shortly thereafter and remarried.  They changed my father’s last name without benefit of adoption and so the existence of my grandfather was lost in the shuffle. When my father was grown, an aunt of his told him the real story, and he tried to search for clues about his real identity. My father died before he could find anything out. I took up the search a few years ago and was amazed to find his grave in Detroit. Through other sources I pieced together bits and pieces about his life. There is no one else alive to ask that I’ve been able to find. The story fascinated me, and I felt compelled to weave a story.  .      

Your protagonist, Ruth, is placed in an interesting situation. Her feelings of teenage angst are very relatable. Did you base any of your characters on real people or people you know personally?
Ruth was actually based on my grandmother.  I knew her well before she died, and her personality  coupled with the stories I heard about her as a young woman fashioned the character in my book. She was rebellious and stubborn, and a great beauty. Peter is based on what I hoped my grandfather was like. I have pictures of him now, but heard very little about his personality.

         This is your first book. Please describe what the journey has been like and a little bit about the publishing process.
This has been an incredible journey.  It seems every step I take forward another door opens, and I am ushered into another phase of the process. I love the writing part and can sit down for hours and spin the story. When it comes to the publishing part, I am a novice, but exactly at the right time the exact person I needed for the next step appeared in my life. My publisher  Desert Coyote Productions took me by the hand and led me through the self publishing experience one step at a time.  Typesetting, fonts and formatting, ISBN numbers…kinda not my forte.  Needless to say, I’ve learned quite a bit. Could I do it on my own now? I think not.  I’ve been amazed at the amount of time all of that takes. I just want to be in my office spinning my stories.
          And lastly, how did you get into writing and what advice would you give to aspiring writers?
I’ve always wanted to write, but like so many others, life got in the way. Many years ago, I found myself raising two teenage boys alone. Divorced, working two jobs and spending a lot of time at sports events watching my boys left little time for a personal life. But once a week, a girlfriend of mine and I took advantage of ladies night at different events. We had a lot of fun and many adventures. One day, we mentioned to each other we should write a book and that’s how it started. I went off on my own as I discovered my style and voice and “An Unlikely Arrangement” was born.
Advice to aspiring writers? Keep going! Learn and grow. Read, read, read. You can learn so  much from reading the works of others. Go for your dream. It IS possible!

Thanks for taking the time to talk with me Patty and best of luck with your debut novel "An Unlikely Arrangement".

Author of An Unlikely Arrangement
Author of Short Story Blackbeard Drank Cocoa
Author of If It's Thursday Night, My Name Must Be Lola


Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Summer Round-Up

Oh poor blog, I've neglected you so. And yet you are still here, waiting for me to return and bring you back to life. Thank you for being so patient. Let's see- what has happened since last I wrote? The summer is whizzing by for one thing. My goal of finishing revisions on Molly McBean and the Secret Cave has come and gone and still I plug away. Some inspiration is needed. Attended the Pennwriters conference in May and what I learned changed the feel of my story in a very good way.
 My horse was lame for  a month and I have a very sick kitty. These things happen. Good things to look forward to though, a good friend's wedding and the possibility aquiring the elusive literary agent. What possibilities are on the horizon for you? Large or small, please share. Reading "Wither" by Lauren DeStefano. Love it. If YA is your cup of tea, I suggest you add it to your reading list. What else are you reading right now?

Thursday, April 14, 2011

What Makes a Good Life?

Let's talk a little about life today. To be more specific, what makes life good for each of us? Is it our spouses? Our careers? How we spend our down time? Our families? I think it's a little of each. We may focus at times on things that seem so important, but in the end, they are not. That's not to say we shouldn't strive to do our best in any given situation, just maybe slow down a little. I know I'm guilty of trying to please everyone but sometimes it's just not possible. I've gotten better at making time for me and boy do I need it! Don't neglect your needs, go after your dreams. Surround yourself with people you love and trust. I'm not saying anything new here, but sometimes we need to hear it again. Here are a few things that make my life good: my husband, my horses, my family and friends, my pets and my writing.  What makes your life good? I would love to hear your input. Done preachin'.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Pick-Up Sticks

You all know the drill: The wind blows, you pick up sticks. And branches and limbs and trees. It's a viscious cycle that never seems to end. It's that time of year for anyone who owns property. It's a thankless job that needs done around every farm when winter is finally done with us. We started to pick up sticks last weekend and it's overwhelming. So many dead branches and limbs litter the pastures. Chain saws greased and revved, rakes at the ready. This year I've decided on a new approach to clean up the property. Bugle Hill will be hosting it's first bonfire-stick party. Come armed with work gloves and rakes. I'll provide the Yuengling and hot dogs and what the heck, I'll throw in the sticks too.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Butterflies were Meant to be Free

We had an interesting experience at Bugle Hill this past week. Seems when we brought our house plants inside last fall, they were hiding a few stow-aways. We didn't notice anything unsual at first, but within a fews days of brining the plants in, we had an influx of wooly worms in the house. We would find them crawling throughout the house like they owned it. The cats of course were kept busy and amused. I didn't put the wooly worms back outside because it had gotten so cold I was afraid I would be dooming them, so everytime I found one racing for the living room I would place it back into a plant. My favorite I named Paco. It became a bit of a game (for me anyway). The cats were always disappointed when I saved one from their clutches. I noticed an actual cocoon in one of the plants, but then thought nothing more about it until one day last week. Apparently that cocoon was growing an Eastern Black Swallowtail. It flitted about the house one evening. The cats were happy again. We immediately googled the pretty thing to see how best to care for it. We learned how to make butterfly nectar and tried to get it to eat. Wiki said we should make sure it was well nourished and then place it in an unheated garage until spring, when it could go outside and be free. Well, it wasn't easy but after a few days in the garage it actually drank the nectar and I saw some hope I could keep it alive until warmer weather. Alas, last night when I came home I notice it was hobbling around and just didn't look right. I decided it should live in the guest bathroom safe from the cats until it was well enough to go outside. Try as I might, I couldn't get it to eat and sadly, it died in the night. On the bright side, I have a slew of tiger moths's (what the wooly worms will become) itching to emerge. I wonder if I will recognize Paco? Has anyone else ever tried to "save" a wild creature? If all goes right, it can be a satisfying experience. Let me hear your stories!

Monday, February 28, 2011

Monday, Muddy Monday

Hello all. Is anyone else out there experiencing the kind of boot sucking mud that we are here at Bugle Hill? It can only be described as "epic." It's that time of the year when soggy pastures meet horses with increasing amounts of Spring Fever. The combination has created two very dirty but extremely happy horses. They seem quite pleased with the results of their efforts to erase any signs that a brush has ever come in contact with their furry bodies. In between rounds of lightening this morning, I managed to get the horses fed and the stalls cleaned, fresh water given and several flakes of hay served. Too bad they had to stay in today. I have that to look forward to again tonight. Sigh. Come on summer, please. I've had enough of winter. I long for night time turn-out and stall fans. Wind, rain, snow and ice begone. I will see you later in the year. You've done your job well. I'll be looking for you May Apples. Who else has had enough of winter?