#WritingWednesday #WritingPrompt Challenge

Today is the 36th Edition of #WritingWednesday!!!

Remember, #WritingWednesday is an EASY, STRESS-FREE, weekly writing challenge.

  • Read the writing prompt below,
  • Spend 5 minutes writing (in your own voice or the voice of a character you’re writing) whatever comes to mind,
  • DON’T EDIT what you write! IT DOES NOT HAVE TO BE PERFECT!

The goal is 5 minutes of creativity.

Today I am writing in the voice of Austin, the main character in my current work in progress, The Beast Within.

Today’s writing prompt:

Write a quick love story. The story must end badly.

“It isn’t love,” I tell myself, mumbling as she walks away. “You don’t love her. Don’t follow her,” I say, as I stand and start toward the door she just disappeared through. “Wait, Sophie, please don’t go.”

I watched as her steps slowed and finally stopped, but she didn’t turn around.

“I… I can’t lose you too,” I said, instead of the words I knew she wanted—needed—to hear.

Her back stiffened. She rounded her shoulders and held her chin up high as she gripped her car keys in her fist. I could imagine the look on her face, strong yet sad—broken yet determined, but she never looked back.

The car beeped twice. She had unlocked the door.

I’m losing her, I thought. I reached out, started to call her again, but she didn’t give me a chance. She took the last few steps toward her car door and climbed in. The door slammed shut with a load echo that reverberated off the building behind me and a shutter shot through my body. I crumpled to my knees as I watched her car drive away.

“I love you.” It was only a whisper, one she would never hear, yet they were the truest words I’d ever spoken.

© 2019 Nina Soden


Alright, now it’s your turn. I’d love to see what today’s writing prompt inspires in you. So, if you are willing, go to the comment section below and start typing. Take 5 minutes and let’s see what you come up with! 

Write a quick love story. The story must end badly.


What books have made your November reading list? Comment below and let me know! Then, click on the links below to check out the December 2019 New York Times Top Ten Lists and see which books you’d like to add to your reading list!


#Theredheadedauthor Presents the December 2019 New York Times TOP 10 Best Sellers – YOUNG ADULT

As an avid reader of fiction (and an author who one day hopes to make the list) I LOVE-LOVE-LOVE checking out the New York Times Best Seller list. So, here it is… The independently ranked top 10 Fiction selections for December 2019!

Image by Thought Catalog from Pixabay

If you’ve read any of the TOP 10 selections and recommend them, please comment below and let me know. If you see something you like and plan to pick up a copy, you can do so by clicking on the cover image, the title or the [BUY IT HERE] button.

As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.


#1 The Hate You Give

by Angie Thomas

A 16-year-old girl sees a police officer killer her friend.


#2 Five Feet Apart

by Rachael Lippincott, Mikki Daughtry, and Tobias Laconis

Stella and Will are in love, but they can’t get within five feet of each other.


#3 The Fountains of Silence

by Ruta Sepetys

During the fascist rule of Spain, Ana and Daniel’s romance blooms amid the turmoil.


#4 The Secret Commonwealth

by Philip Pullman

Lyra Silvertongue’s adventures begin again as she searches for a refuge for separated daaemons.


#5 Call Down the Hawk

by Maggie Stiefvater

Ronan Lynch has the ability to pull objects from his dreams in this spin-off-series of “The Raven Cycle.”


Learn more by clicking HERE!

#6 One of Us is Lying

by Karen M. McManus

For five students, a detour into detention ends in murder.


#7 Wayward Son

by Rainbow Rowell

Simon, Penny and Baz head to America where they find trouble.


#8 Children of Blood and Bone

by Tomi Adeyemi

Zelie fights to restore magic to the land of Orisha.


#9 Frankly in Love

by David Yoon

Frank fakes falling in love in order to fall in love for real.


#10 The Beautiful

by Renee Ahdieh

Celine flees Paris to New Orleans to shed her dark past but finds even more trouble.


Learn more by clicking HERE!

When you purchase a book using a link on this site, I earn an affiliate commission. All commission earnings go back into funding my books; editing, cover design, etc.


#Theredheadedauthor Presents the December 2019 New York Times TOP 10 Best Sellers – FICTION

As an avid reader of fiction (and an author who one day hopes to make the list) I LOVE-LOVE-LOVE checking out the New York Times Best Seller list. So, here it is… The independently ranked top 10 Fiction selections for December 2019!

If you’ve read any of the TOP 10 selections and recommend them, please comment below and let me know. If you see something you like and plan to pick up a copy, you can do so by clicking on the cover image, the title or the [BUY IT HERE] button.

As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.


#1 Twisted Twenty-Six

by Janet Evanovich

The 26th book in the Stephanie Plum series. A New Jersey gangster’s associates go after a bounty hunter’s widowed grandmother.


#2 Blue Moon

by Lee Child

Jack Reacher gets caught up in a turf war between Ukrainian and Albanian gangs.


#3 The Guardians

by John Grisham

Cullen Post, a lawyer and Episcopal minister, antagonizes some ruthless killers when he takes on a wrongful conviction case.


#4 Where The Crawdads Sing

by Delia Owens

In a quiet town on the North Carolina coast in 1969, a young woman who survived alone in the marsh becomes a murder suspect.


#5 The Night Fire

by Michael Connelly

Harry Bosch and Renée Ballard return to take up a case that held the attention of Bosch’s mentor.


#6 Olive Again

by Elizabeth Strout

In a follow-up to the Pulitzer Prize-winning novel “Olive Kitteridge,” new relationships, including a second marriage, are encountered in a seaside town in Maine.


#7 The Dutch House

by Ann Patchett

A sibling relationship is impacted when the family goes from poverty to wealth and back again over the course of many decades.


#8 The Giver of Stars

by Jojo Moyes

In Depression-era Kentucky, five women refuse to be cowed by men or convention as they deliver books.


#9 The Institute

by Stephen King

Children with special talents are abducted and sequestered in an institution where the sinister staff seeks to extract their gifts through harsh methods.


#10 The 19th Christmas

by James Patterson

In the 19th installment of the Women’s Murder Club series, detective Lindsay Boxer and company take on a fearsome criminal known only as “Loman.”


When you purchase a book using a link on this site, I earn an affiliate commission. All commission earnings go back into funding my books; editing, cover design, etc.


Week 35 – #WritingWednesday Challenge

Today is the 35th Edition of #WritingWednesday!!!

Remember, #WritingWednesday is an EASY, STRESS-FREE, weekly writing challenge.

  • Read the writing prompt below,
  • Spend 5 minutes writing (in your own voice or the voice of a character you’re writing) whatever comes to mind,
  • DON’T EDIT what you write! IT DOES NOT HAVE TO BE PERFECT!

The goal is 5 minutes of creativity.

Today I am writing in the voice of my turtle, Elle.

Today’s writing prompt:

Look around you and choose an object in the room. Now write something from the point of view of that object.

There she is, the one who feeds me. My human. I don’t know what to call her, she hasn’t told me her name yet, but she calls me Elle, or Elle-belly which I really like. Especially when she sings to me. I may not know her name, but I do know how to make her smile. She likes it when I swim laps. I start at the soft tentacle covered plant that sticks out of the side of my cozy little room. Then, I climb onto my sunbathing rock and run across it to dive into the water. From there, I spin around and shoot myself through the water, as fast as I can, until I end up back at the plant. I could do it over and over for hours and she would just giggle and smile the whole time. I like making her happy.

© 2019 Nina Soden


Alright, now it’s your turn. I’d love to see what today’s writing prompt inspires you. So, if you are willing, go to the comment section below and start typing. Take 5 minutes and let’s see what you come up with! 

Look around you and choose an object in the room. Now write something from the point of view of that object.


What books have made your November reading list? Comment below and let me know! Then, click on the links below to check out the November 2019 New York Times Top Ten Lists and see which books you’d like to add to your reading list!


#Theredheadedauthor Presents the November 2019 New York Times TOP 10 Best Sellers – Young Adult

As an avid reader (and an author who one day hopes to make the list) I LOVE-LOVE-LOVE checking out the New York Times Best Seller list. So, here it is… The independently ranked top 10 Young Adult selections for November 2019!

If you’ve read any of the TOP 10 selections and recommend them, please comment below and let me know. If you see something you like and plan to pick up a copy, you can do so by clicking on the title, the cover image, or the [BUY IT HERE] button.

As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.


#1 Long Way Down

by Jason Reynolds

…A gun. That’s what fifteen-year-old Will has shoved in the back waistband of his jeans. See, his brother Shawn was just murdered. And Will knows the rules. No crying. No snitching. Revenge.


#2 Dear Martin

by Nic Stone

Justyce McAllister is a good kid, an honor student, and always there to help a friend—but none of that matters to the police officer who just put him in handcuffs. Despite leaving his rough neighborhood behind, he can’t escape the scorn of his former peers or the ridicule of his new classmates.


#3 The Boy in the Striped Pajamas

by John Boyne

Berlin, 1942: When Bruno returns home from school one day, he discovers that his belongings are being packed in crates. His father has received a promotion and the family must move to a new house far, far away, where there is no one to play with and nothing to do. A tall fence stretches as far as the eye can see and cuts him off from the strange people in the distance.


#4 Looking for Alaska

by John Green

First drink. First prank. First friend. First love.

Last words.


#5 The Sun Is Also A Star

by Nicola Yoon

The Universe: Every moment in our lives has brought us to this single moment. A million futures lie before us. Which one will come true? 


#6 I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter

by Erika L. Sanchez

Perfect Mexican daughters do not go away to college. And they do not move out of their parents’ house after high school graduation. Perfect Mexican daughters never abandon their family.


#7 Turtles All The Way Down

by John Green

Aza Holmes never intended to pursuethe disappearance of fugitive billionaire Russell Pickett, but there’s a hundred-thousand-dollar reward at stake and her Best and Most Fearless Friend, Daisy, is eager to investigate.


#8 The Similars

by Rebecca Hanover

This fall, six new students are joining the junior class at the elite Darkwood Academy. But they aren’t your regular over-achieving teens. They’re DNA duplicates, and these “similars” are joining the class alongside their originals.


#9 Salt to the Sea

by Ruta Sepetys

Winter 1945. WWII. Four refugees. Four stories.


#10 The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian

by Sherman Alexie

Determined to take his future into his own hands, Junior leaves his troubled school on the rez to attend an all-white farm town high school where the only other Indian is the school mascot.


When you purchase a book using a link on this site, I earn an affiliate commission. All commission earnings go back into funding my books; editing, cover design, etc.


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#Theredheadedauthor Presents the November 2019 New York Times TOP 10 Best Sellers – FICTION

As an avid reader of fiction (and an author who one day hopes to make the list) I LOVE-LOVE-LOVE checking out the New York Times Best Seller list. So, here it is… The independently ranked top 10 Fiction selections for November 2019!

row of books and a cup of coffee

If you’ve read any of the TOP 10 selections and recommend them, please comment below and let me know. If you see something you like and plan to pick up a copy, you can do so by clicking on the title, the cover image, or the [BUY IT HERE] button.

As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.


#1 Blue Moon

by Lee Child

Jack Reacher gets caught up in a turf war between Ukrainian and Albanian gangs.


#2 The Guardians

by John Grisham

Cullen Post, a lawyer and Episcopal minister, antagonizes some ruthless killers when he takes on a wrongful conviction case.


#3 The Night Fire

by Michael Connelly

Harry Bosch and Renee Ballard return to take up a case that held the attention of Bosch’s mentor.


#4 Where the Crawdads Sing

by Delia Owens

In a quiet town on the North Carolina coast in 1969, a young woman who survived alone in the marsh becomes a murder suspect.


#5 The Giver of Stars

by Jojo Moyes

In Depression-era America, five women refuse to be cowed by men or convention as they deliver books throughout the mountains of Kentucky.


#6 The Dutch House

by Ann Patchett

A sibling relationship is impacted when the family goes from poverty to wealth and back again over the course of many decades.


#7 Find Me

by Andre Aciman

Years after the events of “Call Me by Your Name,” Elio has become a classically trained pianist in Paris while Oliver is a New England college professor with a family.


#8 The 19th Christmas

by James Patterson and Maxine Paetro

In the 19th installment of the Women’s Murder Club series, detective Lindsay Boxer and company take on a fearsome criminal known only as “Loman.”


#9 The Deserter

by Nelson DeMille and Alex DeMille

Two members of the Criminal Investigation Division must bring back a Delta Force soldier who disappeared.


#10 The Institute

by Stephen King

Children with special talents are abducted and sequestered in an institution where the sinister staff seeks to extract their gifts through harsh methods.


When you purchase a book using a link on this site, I earn an affiliate commission. All commission earnings go back into funding my books; editing, cover design, etc.


Author Interview ~ Marc Neuffer

I’d like to welcome Marc Neuffer, author of Light Thief – Journey to the End as a guest on my website. He will be sharing a little about himself, his latest story, and of course his process as a writer. If you have questions that aren’t answer in this interview, please feel free to comment below so he can respond personally.

Let’s start by finding out a little bit about you…

  • What is your name, and do you write under a pen name?
    Marc Neuffer. My children refer to me as ‘the old one.’ I don’t have a pen name. I use a pencil.

Oh boy, it looks like Marc is a comedian… I have a feeling this interview might be very interesting.

  • Where do you call home?
    Middle of nowhere in Marshall County, Alabama
  • Obviously, we know you are an author, but some writers have other jobs as well. Do you have another occupation? Do you believe you’re any good at it? Do you like what you do?
    I’m fully retired from the U.S. Navy – 22 years – and a follow-on twenty-year civilian career as a business owner and as a professional photographer. Perhaps you’ve seen my work on the wall at the post office. I was very good at what I did and have the documentation to prove it. Those other records have been sealed by the court. In the navy, I was a nuclear propulsion engineer.
  • What is your family like?
    Well, my four kids are out on their own with successful careers and families, and they don’t ask for money. I blame their mother for their individual successes. We are empty nesters with one dog and three cats. I don’t know where the cats came from; I’m allergic to cats.
  • If it doesn’t bother you, can you let us know what your childhood home looked like?
    My childhood homes? Well, there were five of them. My father’s career, as an aerospace engineer, caused us to move around a lot until the space program settled down in Huntsville, Alabama. The houses were always in the suburbs, real Leave It To Beaver-villes.
  • Do you have any hobbies other than writing? What do you enjoy doing? Well, I like Pina Coladas and walks in the rain … no wait, that’s just a song I heard on the radio yesterday. Since retiring, I have taken up the piano; it soothes me as much as writing does.
  • What is your greatest dream?
    Well, if you’re asking about a persona dream of doing something I have never done before, then I haven’t got one. I have been around the world, visited more than a dozen countries, played guitar on stage with a band, arrested people, driven police cars, ambulances, and fire trucks, been a sports coach, and Scout Master, started and ran a successful small business, which I have since sold. Everything on my bucket list has been crossed off.

    Now, if you’re asking about things like people I would like to meet or places I would like to go, and we’re talking dreams here, then Samuel Clemens and Mars… yeah, those two.
  • What kind of person do you wish you could be? What is stopping you?
    I’d like to be thirty-two, tall, dark, and handsome with an exotic accent. My wife would like that. Time and genetics hold me back.

Yes, a comedian… I was right.

  • Not to pry too much, but do you remember your first love?
    YES!  She had the most sorrowful brown eyes. Her tail wagged furiously the first time we met. I was twelve. Sadly, she passed away.
  • What is the most terrible thing that ever happened to you? Well, I suppose I would have to say the deaths of my mother and father.
  • What or who inspired you to start writing? And how long have you been writing?
    I remember precisely when I decided to start writing, I was just starting my daily nap, my mind disengaged, letting whatever thoughts might surface, drift around. I came up with a story idea. Ended up writing a science fiction novel around that … then four more books … since late March of this year.
  • What was your dream growing up? Did you achieve that dream? If so, in what ways was it not what you expected? If you never achieved the dream, why not?
    Not really any dreams of the future when I was growing up. So, you can leave this one blank. I was a boy, and as I recall, we didn’t sit around planning our dream wedding, we were too busy finding food and fun.
  • Who is your role model?
    Sorry, I thought about this one … seriously, I don’t have one.
  • What is your greatest fear?
    The greatest fear is something terrible happening to my wife or children. No phobias
  • Do you prefer e-books, paperbacks, hard-covers, or audio-books?
    When my children still lived at home, we would make a trip to ‘the big city’ once a month to visit the book store. Everyone loaded up for their monthly read. So, print books back then. Now I use e-books since I can keep my library on my phone available at all times. I have a few audiobooks I listen to … they help me fall asleep at night.
  • Have you ever read a book more than once? And if so, what was it?
    Since e-books have come along, I have occasionally re-read some of the Sci-Fi classics I read as a teenager. Heinlein, Asimov, Clarke.
  • What is your opinion of novellas?
    I like novellas much the same way I like short people. For me, it’s all about the story; word count is irrelevant.

As a rather short person, I appreciate the lack of discrimination. lol

  • Have you ever read a book just based on its cover?
    No, not without reading a synopsis or back cover.
  • What is your favorite film based on a book?
    Can’t think of one.
  • What is your favorite book genre at the moment?
    History, Historical Fiction, Science Fiction
  • What books have made it onto your wish list recently? And why?
    Humm … don’t have a wish list. I browse when looking for my next book.
  • What book are you reading at the moment? And in what format?
    “Let me see,” he said, reaching for his phone …

    Robinson Crusoe … to study Defoe’s first-person narrative style.
    The Ruin of the Roman Empire – James O’Donnell
    Sector C – The Chosen, by you-know-who

Yes, I do believe I know who write SECTOR C – The Chosen and I appreciate you reading it.

  • If you could invite any four (4) celebrities (alive or dead) to your dinner party, who would you invite and why?
    I don’t care for fictitious people with publicists.

Let’s shift somewhat and talk about your latest story.

  • What is the name of your most recent book and if you had to sum it up in 20 or fewer words, what would you say?
    Light Thief – Journey to the End
    Sci-Fi – In the far future, a twelve-year-old girl finds her purpose 20 years later, while searching for something else.
  • Is the above book part of a series?
    Yes, but it can be read as a stand-alone novel
  • How did you come up with the cover? Who designed the cover of your book(s)?
    When starting a new book, I browse the pre-made cover offerings for something that fits.  I do the title graphics myself.
  • Did you listen to any particular songs while writing your book(s)?
    Not unless my wife has the radio on.
  • How did you come up with the title for your book(s)?
    Well, for the first one, I was thinking about physics and the universe, how heat and light are the basic building blocks. Don’t get me started on E=MC2; it’s not an equivalency.   Anyway, Heat and Light became the title, followed, naturally by Cold and Dark, then Light Thief. See what I did there?
  • Do you have a book trailer? If so, where can we watch it?
    No book trailer… have a boat trailer.
  • In your latest novel, who is the lead character, and can you tell us a little about him/her?
    In Light Thief, Darby is a 12-year-old, precocious self-assured daughter of a scientist mother and a lost space explorer father. The book follows her through the next twenty years.
  • What is your character’s greatest strengths?
    Belief in self and living a non-self-limiting life.
  • And what are his/her greatest weaknesses?
    Men?  The unrelenting pull into space to find her lost father, or what had happened to him.
  • What are some of his/her favorite foods?
    Jahuna chips — very crunchy with just the right amount of salt — the hot ones.  I made that up for the book.
  • Will readers like or dislike this character, and why?
    Unless the reader is a sociopath, they will not only like, but identify with her coming of age story. She never kills anyone who doesn’t deserve it. What a girl!
  • What first gave you the idea for your latest book?
    A reader of my books, Paradox Twins and Riley 2.0  asked what happened to Riley after the 2.0 story. Rather than continue with Riley as the main character, in Light Thief, she becomes an off-stage (and disembodied) persona that occasionally interacts with Darby.

Let’s talk now about your writing process.

  • What is your writing style like? Are you a pantster or a plotter?
    I write with my high-beams on … letting the characters live their lives unencumbered by me. I simply type as I watch the movies play in my head. Given that, I usually have an end-of-story I’m driving towards.

I write in much the same way. I do use a planning guide to help me keep track of important details, but mostly I just fly by the seat of my pants following my characters’ lead and writing what I see at the movie of their lives play out.

  • Have you come across any specific challenges in writing or publishing? What would you do differently the next time?
    I would pick the brains of someone who had been through self-publishing themselves. As for writing, I generally do a very structured stream of consciousness flow, not letting myself be too concerned with commas, split infinitives or starting sentence with an –ing ending word.

    Self-publishing is very easy, once you learn the technical steps. If you need help, ask a teenager to walk you though the website steps. I think they are all IT department people.

  • Since you are a self-published/Indie author what made you go that route instead of the traditional publishing route?
    First, it is very time consuming to find an interested traditional publisher.  I think Amazon’s platform for indies makes them nervous. They may become the next buggy whip manufacturers, as in ‘what purpose do they serve.’

    Secondly, I don’t trust anybody’s opinion but my own. I know my material, I do research for my books, and I know when my work satisfies me.  I learned that editors don’t read like real people; it’s so sad.
  • What’s the best advice that you have been given when it comes to writing?
    I never received any, except from my 6th grade teacher who wanted me to write legibly. I didn’t know any writers when I started. So, I got nothing on this question.
  • Where can your readers follow you? Please list links to any applicable websites and/or social media accounts.