Please welcome Pat Garcia on ‘Writer’s Treasure Chest’. I’m very proud to have this wonderful author, poet, singer and friend on my blog, and I thank her so much for being my guest today.
Please introduce yourself?
I am Pat Garcia. That’s my pen name. I write fiction, non-fiction, poetry, and Lyrics, and I sing and play piano.
1. When did you start writing?
I started singing when I was three and started writing when I started school at the age of five.
2. What motivates you to write?
My raison d’ etre. It my purpose for living.
3. What genres do you write in and what made you choose this particular genre?
I write in several genres that are important for me. Romance to include Romantic Suspense, Women Fiction, Erotic and non-fiction I love writing creative non-fiction
4. What is your goal in writing? Do you have dreams where your writing should take you?
My goals and my dreams are very personal and private, so I am not going to share them.
5. Do you ever suffer from writer’s block and if yes, how do you deal with it?
There are times when I get stuck and when I do get stuck, I start on something else, or I write in my journal or I stay with the same story and just write until I find a spark.
6. What advice would you like to give new, hopeful authors?
To not put a time table on what you want to achieve. In fact, I would advise them to not be so quick to share their souls with others. There are some things that the writer has to keep to himself.
7. Please, tell us about your work.
We are coming out of lockdown here in Germany. During the lockdown, I wrote. I submitted two stories to two different publications, started working at THE PIPELINE, which is an RRBC International online literary magazine as the chief staff writer, and now, I am finishing up a submission for another writing contest and a novella that will come out in 2022.
Thank you for being my guest. It was such a pleasure to have you here!!
Meet Pat Garcia:
Born in Blythe, Georgia, USA, Pat Garcia enjoys writing, music, and games like Bridge, Solitaire, Bid Whiz, Chess, Checkers, and Knitting.
Like many other ladies nowadays, occasionally, I met a man online. I admit, so far, I haven’t been fortunate with online acquaintances. But you never know there might be one who is different than ‘all the others’, right? I decided to give it a chance instead of blocking the try before he can barely say more than a few words.
Number 1 – decided he’d rather play golf and watch movies than talking to me.
Number 2 – an excellent converser, highly intelligent, funny, humorous – and picky. He took me out on a date – outside dining right by the ocean on Santa Monica beach – we had a wonderful dinner, great conversation – and I got the worst flu I had in the past 28 years – and never heard from him again.
Number 3 – Jackpot!! That was probably the sweetest guy I ever ‘met.’ Handsome too! Of course, there was the occasional flaw (like the same first name my ex-boyfriend had and a couple of other little things ), but I thought there was nothing intolerable. We were unable to meet right away since he had a big project going on and needed to go to Europe on a business trip – he had to prepare different things. And I got sick. Even though he wanted to ‘meet’ in a video call, I refused to do so. I want to meet a man for the first time when I’m fit, healthy, and styled… hair and makeup done – and so on… and not sitting home, sniffing with a stuffy nose and in my pj’s… We therefore texted, talked on the phone, and emailed. What a sweet man… We were talking about meeting after his return, seeing how it works out, things like that. There was nothing suspicious. I usually am immediately alarmed if a guy I never saw before talks about love, but he did nothing like that!
One day, about a week before Easter, he went on his business trip. I said I would miss the calls since his phone roaming would cost him so much, but he assured me he had the perfect international phone plan. I suggested connecting on Messenger or WhatsApp, which would make calls for free. However, he still insisted, everything was ok, and it wouldn’t cost him anything more to call me, nor would I have to pay. (Interesting. I know about the roaming costs in Europe with U.S. phones… international plan, or not, it sure as hell ain’t for free) Well, I figured, if he insists, fine. I still told a friend of mine, when it comes to me, he could sit somewhere around the corner – I can’t check that. He insisted he was in Eastern Europe somewhere in the forest – and still sounded like standing next to me.
Shortly before he was supposed to come back, something in his project went wrong. There was a machine failing; one of the workers got injured, he worked like a maniac and still couldn’t get things fixed. He had not calculated his budget with the last resort’s assets, and he needed big bucks to get his project going. Otherwise, he could lose everything. A while later, he tells me, his phone got damaged when he tried to make that machine work, and he can barely do much. He’s happy he still can text, but then, after a while, the call function worked too. He talked to a friend and a business associate, and they both are going to help him out financially.
I had never offered any help, and I was thinking by myself over and over again, “please, don’t ask me for money – please don’t ask me for money…”
In the last call, he tells me he couldn’t bring the price down any further. He was desperate – and he was still $5,500 short. Could I please…?
My answer was short and clear: “No.”
He was almost crying… “But you know how much that project means to me. And I’ll give it back to you as soon as I return.” I’m a bit firmer: “I cannot help you.” He is desperate now. “Can you not, or do you not want to…?” And I replied: “It doesn’t matter. I wish you had never asked.” He tells me. “I’ll keep you updated.” And I replied. “Sure… sure.” Convinced I’ll never hear from him again. Shortly after, his profile was gone from my list.
And that was that…
Now, am I surprised this happened? To my astonishment, no. If something seems to be too good to be true, it mostly is.
I was even asked once ‘…but sometimes things aren’t going as planned; what if he sits there, in Eastern Europe and does have a problem? And I had to answer: “Sorry… then it’s not my problem. It’s his project. I worked as a project manager. Your budget is supposed to entail a percentage for emergencies. Calling me ‘sweetheart’ does not give anyone access to my bank account. – And if he took the risk and it didn’t work out – find a way to solve the problem without my money.”
That doesn’t mean I cannot do my research. Apparently, the pictures the man sent me seemed accurate; at least they didn’t show up anywhere else. The phone number he gave me was connected to a company website that appeared to be his, but: There was no address, just a contact form, which seems weird to me, considering that it’s supposed to be a trading company. That only means that I might have heard half-truths and that this ‘company’ was only ‘founded’ for particular that purpose – for scams.
Also, the IP address was located about 18 miles Northwest of where he said his house and office were located. However, that doesn’t say much; after all, I’m using a proxy server too.
I did a little digging and found an article about Romance Scams on the ‘Better Business Bureau’ website. When I was done reading, I laughed. My case couldn’t have been more ‘typical.’ It was almost point-by-point following the original scheme. The article I relate to can be found here: BBB Tip: Romance Scams.
Now, please, don’t feel sorry for me! That isn’t a case where I need people to pity me. He tried and lost. I’m not heartbroken! I published this post for two reasons: Number 1 – as a warning!
Ladies – watch out there! This guy isn’t the only one to try.
Always keep in mind: if it seems to be too good to be true – it probably is!
Listen to your gut feeling. The slightest doubt – and you go digging. Please do it! It can save you from possibly making a bad mistake.
And number 2: to the scammers out there:
Yes, I would love to be in a relationship and have someone by my side but make no mistake: I’m not desperate.
I suspect we all know the touching moment we waited for after we were going through the adventures of the romantic couple. We smiled with them when they found each other. We were happy with them when they fell in love. We cried with them when they lost each other because of some horrible misunderstanding. And, of course, we celebrated when they found each other again, kissed and ‘lived happily ever after.’
Don’t we ask ourselves how their wedding looked like? How are their families, how their friends? Don’t we wish sometimes we could play a ‘fly on the wall’ seeing how their relationship develops when challenged by marriage?
And that’s when my imagination runs wild.
Of course, it would be amazing and heartwarming to see their wedding. Because weddings are always touching and celebrating and viewing the ‘good’ in everything and everybody.
And then our couple moves in with each other. Both go to work… every morning she makes her favorite coffee, every morning he tells her that this particular brand gives him bad reflux. Then they climb in their own cars and drive off, only to see each other late at night, due to overtime and traffic jams.
She cooks, but he’s not home. Disappointed, she covers his meal and puts it away in the refrigerator, leaving him a note before she goes to bed. He comes home late, makes himself a sandwich because he can’t stand that particular dish, and never dared to tell her.
The weekends they often spend with their in-laws’ camping or in the one or other backyard with a barbecue. They can’t go on vacation… because they can’t get off the same time – and of course, they cannot stay away from work longer than a weekend.
Even though everyone waits for them to announce that they are expecting, that never happens because both are too busy to make money and soon buy their own house… Unfortunately, they don’t realize they are waiting too long until she’s in her forties and finally decides it might be too risky to have a child now.
Occasionally they’re going out for dinner, but mostly they don’t have to say much to each other unless they discuss the job… and then it’s Monday, and the routine starts from scratch.
They might buy the house everybody expects them to buy. It’s a breathtaking museum, but they’re too busy with their job to enjoy it… it’s not a home, it’s just a status symbol. And they both continue working.
And at one point they realize… they don’t have that much to say to each other. They don’t know, do we actually know each other? Or did we just rush into our marriage because everybody expected us to; our families, the readers…
Basically, their marriage is the wrong coffee, and a woman who cannot cook… it’s everything everyone expects, but to them, it’s just routine and boredom.
And that’s why a romantic book usually ends with the kiss and the ‘happily ever after.’
Lately, I was interviewed for the website of the Paranormal Romance Guild and was informed that the interview would be on the website today. Thank you very much for the great feature, Paranormal Romance Guild! I’m very excited!
Interview with AJ Alexander
by Sherry Perkins
AJ Alexander — author, poet, lover of Maine coon cats. Don’t know what a Maine coon cat is? It’s a ball of fur with attitude. But I digress…I met AJ through the Paranormal Romance Guild and an incidental Facebook encounter where she was holding the Halloween poetry contest she sponsors every year. She was looking for contest judges. I volunteered.
To be honest, I’d also been following her blog, “Writer’s Treasure Chest,” for quite a while as well. AJ’s blogs are filled with goodies such as writing and marketing advice, the occasional bit of comedic relief and even pictures of Maine coon cats. But more than that, she’s a writer who loves what she does — whether it’s novellas, poetry or paranormal romance and fantasy — and it shows.
She took a minute away from promoting her newest book, “Demon Tracker,” to answer a few questions.
1. Short stories, poetry, and novels–which is your favorite to write, and why?
I love writing novels (and novellas, in my case), and also, I write poetry, some of which I published on my blog “Writer’s Treasure Chest.” I enjoy the flow of the words and the rhymes when I write poetry. I could get carried away within the verses. The novel writing is my true passion. I have a straight plot; then I start knitting the “side-stories,” put my pen on the paper and start writing. Often there is even another one or two more side stories or unexpected characters coming up. I love the creating of worlds, weaving my imagination with the characters, and see how they develop.
All this is rarely possible with short stories. I’m not saying they’re a terrible thing, but they need a lot of planning to get one entire story inside of around 7,500 words. I love it to be carried away by the story, and it is almost a punishment to limit my fantasy into a word-frame.
I found a great blog post, written by successful author Jamie Fessenden. (Around Christmas time last year I read his novel ‘Tomte’ and loved it.) Thank you very much for your writing advice, Jamie! I don’t doubt I’m the only one who appreciates your post.
So my latest novel, Small Town Sonata, was contracted for publication by Dreamspinner Press, and I’m very happy. Hopefully, it signals the revving up of my writing career again.
So, in the spirit of that, and because someone asked about it in a Facebook group, I’ve decided to offer some Writing Advice (capitalized, to show how pompous… I mean “important” it is). Seriously, this is just some stuff I learned over the years. Take it or leave it, as you like. It’s less about writing than about some practical concerns.
My newest Christmas story Tomte is now available on Amazon for pre-order!
It’s a very short pre-order period, mostly because I’ve never done one before, so I needed to figure out how they work. But the official release date is on Saturday, December 1st.
RYAN ANDERSON has known something was wrong since he was a teenager. He’s been tormented by a sense of emptiness and loss—but what did he lose? He has no idea. Then a mysterious man appears, calling himself Tomte, a Swedish word Ryan remembers hearing from his grandmother in his childhood.
It means “Christmas elf.”
With the help of his older brother and his nine-year-old niece, Ryan begins a journey to discover what happened fifteen years ago, when he disappeared during a winter storm and didn’t reappear until spring. Not only has he forgotten those months, he’s forgotten the faithful dog who failed to come…
Lady Sarah put down her cup of tea and pondered the meaning of her life. According to her father she shouldn’t be doing this. First of all she shouldn’t be using her brain (according to her father) and second (according to her father) her life had no meaning until she became a wife. That would be a wife to a man of her father’s choosing.
The first time she was engaged it was to George. They’d grown up together. The prospect of being George’s wife was exciting. They’d been friends forever. But he grew distant and then one day went away and came back a week later with a beautiful wife and a tiny newborn baby. The baby had been named Sarah.
The second man she had been engaged to was Percy. He was quite wealthy, good looking and said “Sarah, dear Sarah, I…