Thursday, April 26, 2012

Free Kindle ebook: WHALE SONG by Cheryl Kaye Tardif

On April 26 and 27, I am giving away free Kindle copies of my "heart book"--WHALE SONG. It is the best gift I can think of to give you.

I call it my "heart book" because it was my first published book and the story I am most emotionally connected to of all my titles. To say I "love" this book is an understatement. :-)

Whale Song has literally changed people's lives. In fact, one woman told me it "saved" her. Another told me it reunited her with her mother, who also read my novel. Another said it helped her deal with the loss of a parent. Many readers have laughed and cried and healed. I am blessed.

So today please accept a free copy of WHALE SONG and share it with a loved one.

This international bestseller, which has received much movie interest, is FREE on Amazon TODAY & TOMORROW only.


A "compelling" story of family ties, love, tragedy, sacrifice and transformation that will change the way you view life...and death.

Thirteen years ago, Sarah Richardson’s life was shattered after the tragic death of her mother. The shocking event left a grief-stricken teen-aged Sarah with partial amnesia.

Some things are easier to forget.

But now a familiar voice from her childhood sends Sarah, a talented mid-twenties ad exec, back to her past. A past that she had thought was long buried.

Some things are meant to be buried.

Torn by nightmares and visions of a yellow-eyed wolf and aided by creatures of the Earth and killer whales that call to her in the night, Sarah must face her fears and recover her memories―even if it destroys her.

Some things are meant to be remembered―at all cost.


“I read Whale Song and loved it.” ―Jodelle Ferland, actress (The Twilight Saga: Eclipse, Case 39)

“Tardif’s story has that perennially crowd-pleasing combination of sweet and sad that so often propels popular commercial fiction…Tardif, already a big hit in Canada…a name to reckon with south of the border.” ―Booklist

Whale Song is deep and true, a compelling story of love and family and the mysteries of the human heart...a beautiful, haunting novel.” ―NY Times bestselling novelist Luanne Rice, author of Beach Girls

“A wonderfully well-written novel. Wonderful characters [that] shine. The settings are exquisitely described. The writing is lyrical. Whale Song would make a wonderful movie.” ―Writer’s Digest

Whale Song is reminiscent of Ring of Endless Light by M. L’Engle, and Secret Life of Bees by Sue Monk Kidd.” ―Carol D. O’Dell, author of Mothering Mother

“One doesn’t simply read a Tardif story, one experiences it! Among the very few authors I’ve ever said that about is my all-time favorite Pat Conroy. Like him, Cheryl Kaye Tardif has a definite way with words.” ―Betty Dravis, co-author of Dream Reachers I & II.

“Tardif leaves a lasting mark on her readers…Moving and irresistible.” ―Midwest Book Review

Pick up your FREE Kindle copy of WHALE SONG today. You can read it on your Kindle ereader, smartphone, tablet with the Kindle app, PC or laptop.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Canada's Most Wanted

The investigator (Cst Jennifer Hunter) says Lewis is from the Edmonton, Alberta Canada area. Do not approach. Call one of the numbers listed on the poster if you spot him or have any information on his whereabouts.

Police warn about Gypsy/Irish Pavers.

Yearly Movement of “Travelers” to Canada to Conduct Home Improvement Scams
Also referred to as Gypsy/Irish Pavers.

Known in enforcement circles as “Travelers” , they are a distinct group of nomadic individuals historically of Irish, Scottish and English descent that arrive in Canada (from the USA, the United Kingdom and Ireland) and are operating as unlicensed, itinerant contractors.  They  usually reside in campgrounds or  trailers parks just outside major urban centers working the rural peripheries of the larger centers and small rural communities. They tend to visit southern Alberta in the spring each year.  The groups run scams involving paving, painting, roofing, rain gutters, chimney repair or any other home renovations. 
A typical sales pitch is that they are working in the neighborhood and can offer a reduced rate on a particular job.  Their work may be of poor quality and the consumer ends up paying considerably more to fix the shoddy outcome. Targets of these groups are often seniors who succumb to high pressure sales tactics .  The Travelers hound their victims until they have received as much money as the scam artist feels he/she can get out of their victim.  
Education, prevention and consumer awareness are the best ways to deal with unscrupulous contractors.  Investigations after the fact may not have successful outcomes: these individuals typically stay in a community for only a short time, making it difficult for police to identify, locate and when possible obtain evidence and charge them.  It is important for homeowners to know their rights and the protections that exist so that they can be confident in the people they hire.  Service Alberta has an eight page Home Renovations Tipsheet that helps homeowners determine a qualified and competent contractor   (
Possible warning signs:
- knock on your door offering a special price because they just happen to be doing work in the area.
- promise a discount if you allow them to use your home to advertise their work.  The same offer is likely made to everyone.
- quote a price without seeing the actual job
- demand a large down payment for materials
- conduct a free inspection of your home and then suggest major repairs
- unmarked truck or van with out of province licence plates
- no business identification
- local address or phone number
- no local references
North West Region Immigration and Passport Section (NWRIPS) is working closely with Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA)  to deal with these suspects.  Suspects can be checked to see if they are in Canada legally and, if a foreign national, determine what their status is in regards to working here in Canada.  Should you hear of any types of these occurrences please contact the Immigration and Passport section as we are attempting to monitor and assist various detachments . 
North West Region Immigration and Passport Section
7575 8th Street NE
Calgary, Alberta
On call cell: 403-701-2007

Cst. Bruce STANGL                                               Cst. David  GRAHAM
NWRIPS                                                              NWRIPS
403-699-2692                                                      403-699-2482

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

To Agent or Not to Agent

I had an agent once. Then I had another agent. Then I had the first agent again. Then I had no agent.
Recently I was offered the chance for a new agent. I'm sitting on the fence, trying to decide which way to jump.
On the one side are people who say that the old system is breaking down, and authors don't need to become cogs in the machine. They argue that you have more freedom as an author if you go it alone: you write what you want to write and let the people who publish that type of thing work with you instead of writing what some Bighouse Publisher thinks the world wants to read.
On the other side are the people who are actually making money, because those Bighouse Publishers print in tens of thousands rather than hundreds of books. Those people generally have an agent. (Before you start writing that comment, I know there are exceptions, people who make a ton with an indie book. They're widely discussed and seldom imitated.)
So the arguments go back and forth. Agents take a percentage, and at least in one of my past experiences, do nothing to earn it that I couldn't have done for myself. But there's always the hope that an agent will know the editor who is looking right this minute for exactly what I just wrote. That's why they're worth that percentage-- when the system works.
What I have decided is that I'm operating from a much better position now than I was when I dealt with the first two agents (one of whom dropped me. The other I fired, but in the nicest possible way.) I know the business better now. I have some successes under my belt that make me a desirable client rather than a "Please Sir or Madam, will you read my book" type. I know that an agent is supposed to work for me, not act as if she's doing me a big favor by reading an occasional email. And I know what a good one can do for my career if I decide I really want to enter the larger stage and take on the pressures of Advanced Writing and Publishing. With this knowledge, I plan to meet with my prospective agent soon. When that happens, we will meet as members of a potentially productive team, and I will be every bit as ready to say, "Not for me" as she is.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

On writing Crime Fiction

I think it was the TV police/detective dramas that I grew up with that channeled me into Crime Fiction writing…I’m not sure. It was never a goal of mine to write either about murder and drug dealing and criminal gangs and computer fraud or the men and women who fight these crimes.

Yet…that what I ended up writing…an entire 7 or 8 book series on such characters and incidents. Oh, well…it’s an exciting genre with which to work. The play of good against evil is never so stark as in a good, old-fashioned, blood-letting murder…in a metal shed, in the middle of the Alberta prairie on an cold, dark October night…

Where do I come up with these things? Hmmm…well, I actually don’t. You see these…characters…channel their stories to me. I just type, and edit, proof, scrap, rearrange, and research, and query and submit, and re-do…


Crime writing. 

They say to write what you know but not many bikers, murders, 13-year old girls and cops write so I figured it was my duty to fill in for them. To let people know what it is like out there…or might be like. What it’s like in my imagination, anyways. Hopefully it is sort of close to what it’s really like--good and evil and mixtures of both.

Convoluted motives based on secret and traumatic pasts. Unknown futures. Broken promises in the name of the law. Lies to protect the innocent and uncover the guilty. Aching hearts, lost souls, and hidden emotions--or no emotions. Greed. 

Check out the THE TRAZ

“Cold, heavy metal in her hand...she’d shot someone. Who?” 
“The action and dialogue are visceral, relentless...blistering…”

Sunday, April 01, 2012


April Fool's pranks generally aren't criminal in nature, but they are fun to read about. 

Thank you to Tim handorf for giving me npermission to repost this fun article from Best Colleges Online website: 11 Legendary College Pranks to Applaud on April Fool’s Day

11 Legendary College Pranks to Applaud on April Fool’s Day

Posted on Wednesday March 28, 2012 by Every year on the first of April you’ll see coffee cups glued to car roofs and Facebook statuses claiming surprise marriages. But don’t we deserve a better class of jokester? Is it too much to ask for a little thought and effort? Consider these legendary pranks by college kids as inspiration, and be like them. It doesn’t matter that you’re not drunk, responsibility-free, and reckless. If you want it badly enough, you can make fools of us all.
  1. George P. Burdell

    When your prank becomes a running joke at the school for nearly 100 years, you know it’s legendary. In 1927, when precocious student Ed Smith received two enrollment forms for Georgia Tech, he decided to enroll the imaginary George P. Burdell at the same time. Amazingly, Smith then proceeded to enter Burdell in all his classes and do all his homework and tests twice, changing them slightly, to serve as Burdell’s “work.” Thus began the legend of the “man” who has since received every undergraduate degree at Tech, served in World War II, worked at Mad Magazine, and had a Tech school store named after him.
  2. Bonsai kittens

    Beware when MIT students get bored. In 2000, a website appeared claiming to sell kittens sealed into glass jars in order to permanently make them the shape of the container. The site featured outrageous photos of a person supposedly using a shoehorn to stuff one of the cats in the “insertion process,” and an uncomfortable looking kitty pressed up against the glass. Gullible folks at the Humane Society bit, and bit hard, hard enough that the feds got involved and exposed the hoax.
  3. Car on the roof

    Nothing is better than pulling off a prank that makes people say, “How the heck did they do that?” For half a century that’s what people in Cambridge were saying after someone parked an Austin Seven on the roof of Cambridge University’s Senate House in 1958. Police and firemen had to disassemble it to get it off the roof. Fifty years later, a group of engineering students came forward and explained how they did it with three groups using winches, ropes, and pulleys.
  4. Great Rose Bowl Hoax

    It’s a little tame by today’s standards, but this one’s in the pantheon of legendary college pranks. At the 1961 Rose Bowl game, Minnesota squared off against Washington in front of 100,000 stadium fans and millions more watching NBC’s broadcast of the game. At halftime, they were treated to the surprise of a carefully choreographed flip-card show that concluded with Washington students unwittingly displaying signs that formed the word “CALTECH.” Angered over their continued exclusion from the Rose Bowl proceedings, Caltech students had spent weeks creating 2,232 replacement flip cards.
  5. Hugo N. Frye

    When students at Cornell’s campus paper needed an angle for their second annual banquet, they landed on the idea of embarrassing gullible politicians for a few laughs. So they created Hugo N. Frye out of thin air as “the father of the Republican party” and invited prominent GOPers to attend the banquet for his 150th birthday. None could attend, but their glowing remarks were read aloud at the banquet by gleeful students. “It is a pleasure to testify to the career of that sturdy patriot who first planted the ideals of our party in this region of the country,” the Secretary of Labor wrote. Even the vice president at the time congratulated them. The New York Times got ahold of it and the prank swept the country.
  6. Veterans of Future Wars

    Ah, political humor. In 1936, some prophetic Princeton guys, disgusted by bonuses being granted to veterans of World War I, reasoned that the odds were quite strong that sooner or later they too would be called to war. Thus, as future veterans, they deserved their bonuses up front while they were still able to enjoy them. Overnight, Veterans of Future Wars parties sprang up on campuses all over the country. They even had their own salute: an outstretched arm similar to the Nazi Party, except with the palm turned up, ready for a handout. Real veterans were outraged and the group was denounced by Congress. In other words, mission accomplished.
  7. Harvard sucks

    Imitation, as they say, is the sincerest form of flattery. In a 2004 homage to Caltech, Yale students donned red t-shirts and hit the Harvard-Yale game as the “Harvard Pep Squad.” Not content to simply trick Harvard fans into holding up a “Yale” sign, the pranksters handed out red and white signs that formed a giant “We Suck” over the Crimson faithful. In the hilarious video, a Harvard guy nearly blows their cover, and a sweet old Harvard mom asks, “It’s not going to say something like ‘Yale sucks’ is it?”
  8. Maryland half-court shot

    Collegehumorstaffers Amir Blumenfeld and Streeter Seidell authored a string of hilarious back-and-forth pranks on each other from 2006 to 2009. Streeter kicked things off by tricking Amir into listening to the audio of Streeter getting down with his girlfriend. One of the best moments came a few rounds later, when Streeter publicly humiliated Amir at a Maryland basketball game by enlisting the crowd to make Amir briefly think he’d made a half-court shot for $500,000. The poor fool celebrated like an idiot — then he saw Streeter.
  9. Theft of the Sacred Cod

    Sometimes the simplest pranks get the best reactions. In 1933, Harvard Lampoon staffers quietly absconded with “the sacred cod,” a five-foot wooden fish that hung over the entrance to the Massachusetts House of Representatives chamber. You’d have thought they’d kidnapped the Lindberg baby. State police were called in. The Charles River was dragged. A Lampoon writer was detained by police at an airport and questioned for hours. After three days of hysteria, the Harvard chief of police was led into the woods and there two saddle-shoed young men returned the cod.
  10. Greasing the railroad tracks

    This prank from Auburn’s past has the smell of tall tale to it, but it’s so cool and such a Tiger tradition that we’re going to give it the benefit of the doubt. Legend has it, the night before the 1896 Auburn-Georgia Tech football game, Auburn students crept down to the railroad station under cover of night and greased a quarter-mile of track with pig fat. When the train carrying the Yellow Jackets rolled in come morning, the train slid five miles past its stop and the players had to walk back to town, tiring them out and paving the way to an Auburn victory.
  11. “Clap if you think he’s guilty”

    The NoZe Brotherhood is an underground society at Baylor University, whose members wear Groucho glasses to disguise their identities. One of their funniest moments came in 1973 at the yearly Homecoming Parade. The Grand Marshall was Baylor alum Leon Jaworski, who only days before had been made the prosecutor in the investigation of President Nixon and Watergate. As Jaworski rolled down the street waving to hundreds of applauding spectators, a NoZe brother followed behind him in trademark wig, glasses, and trench coat with a sign that read (referring to Nixon), “Clap if you think he’s guilty.”

    Eileen Schuh, Author
    Schrödinger's Cat
    Web site: