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Wednesday, June 20, 2012

A Writer's Journey (Part I)

It is my pleasure to welcome author Peggy Blann Phifer to The Over 50 Writer. Over the past several years, Peg and I have developed a friendship that has its roots in our writing interest, but has blossomed as we supported and encouraged each other through not only our writing endeavors, but personal issues as well. Peg is one of the most persistent and dedicated writers I know. She experienced many stumbling blocks in pursuit of her goal. I am honored that she is willing to guest on my blog and share her journey with you and me.


No, not that beginning, though sometimes if feels that long. You see, even though To See the Sun made its debut this past January—and is technically an infant—the book is approximately twenty years old. And, like everything else, it has gone through all the pains and mistakes of growing and maturing to the point where it was ready to be “born.” I like to joke about this as a twenty year pregnancy.

My road to publication has been a rocky one. I turned 50 in 1989 and began to wonder what kind of legacy I would leave behind. I’d always written. Sometimes in my head, sometimes on paper (none of which survived) and sometimes I’d rewrite books I’d read. Like Gone With the Wind? Bonnie didn’t die, Rhett came back and they all lived happily ever after. Yeah, well . . .

I had a grand idea for a story back in the early 1990’s, about a girl in her late teens who was a barrel racer in the rodeo and already a champion. Then she discovers she has leukemia. Great ingredients for a story, right? Only I knew nothing about barrel racing, horses, the rodeo, or leukemia. But that didn’t stop me.

I’d just gotten my first computer through the company I worked for. It was described as “an IBM clone.” Specifications: 386sx 25mhz, w/1Mb RAM; 89Mb IDE Hard drive, with both a 3.5” 1.44Mb and 5.25” 1.2Mb floppy drives, 14” VGA Monitor. Base price: $1,099.00. Then I had to add Windows 3.1 and a mouse, internal modem and a 3Mb RAM upgrade (in order to install Windows.) Final price: $1,343. Can you believe it? Took me two years to pay that puppy off. Oh, and then I had to buy a printer . . . dot matrix, of course. Incidentally, Windows 3.1 came on 25 3-1/2” discs and took close to 3 hours to load.

Anyway, back to my story and research. I found a forum on the Internet about the rodeo and hooked up with a few of them and ended up being invited to be “behind the scenes” for the NFR (National Finals Rodeo) held in December. Never saw the rodeo, I was in the tents with the horses. Talk about being completely intimidated and way out of my league. Never met any of the cowboys, either, darn it all. But it was an exciting day, nevertheless.

My story died a quick death. I found several pages in longhand on yellow legal paper the other day. Let me just say, uh, RIP, Marcy’s Dream.

But another story took its place, this time with a female character named Tori, short for Victoria, and I titled it Totally Tori. “Tori” was the initial beginning of Erin in To See the Sun

More about that next time.

(be sure to come back for the next installment in Peggy's story on Thursday, July 5th)


Pregnant and widowed hadn’t been part of her “happily ever after” dream. And now, someone was trying to kill her . . .

Erin Macintyre never expected to be a widow and a new mother in the same year, anymore than she expected mysterious notes, threatening phone calls, and a strange homeless man who seems to know all about her. The thought of raising a child without a father is daunting enough—worse when you have no idea who might want to harm you. Put an old flame into the mix, and her life begins a tailspin into a world she never knew existed.

When P.I. Clay Buchanan, stumbles upon Erin at her husband's gravesite, he’s totally unprepared for her advanced pregnancy. Her venomous reaction at seeing him, however, was predictable. But Clay can’t let her distrust, or his guilt, get in the way—not when he has evidence that proves Erin’s life is in danger.

With few options left, Erin begrudgingly accepts Clay’s help . . . and it just might be her undoing.
Read the first chapter at:  http://peggyblannphifer.com/my_books.htm

Buy Links:
· Amazon
· Kindle
· B&N Nook

Patti's review:
How well do we know our spouses? Erin MacIntyre didn't learn about the secrets hers had been keeping from her until he was dead. Now she is left with a grieving heart, a baby on the way, and a mystery to solve. Not only is she thrown into the midst of the perplexing puzzle. Her life is being threatened as she seeks answers.

Erin's grief is laced with anger as she is faced with the return of former love interest Clay Buchanan, who betrayed her and her husband's friendship years before. Yet, Clay holds keys to the solution Erin is seeking. As Clay helps her paste pieces of the puzzle together, he struggles to regain Erin's trust and win her love.

This story piqued my curiosity on page one and led me down a path of adventure that spurred me on to the end with a sense of urgency to learn the outcome. The author combined a balance of mystery and tension, tempered with tenderness and sprinkled with humor to produce an enjoyable read. 

I especially liked the interactions between the characters. The relationships were well defined, and each new player in the story had their own distinct place in the mystery, whether advocate or enemy as she traveled through a maze of uncertainty.

The portrayal of Las Vegas in To See the sun [[ASIN:1468121081 To See the Sun: Desert Faith Series Book One]]transcends the typical stereotype of "sin city" and gives readers a glimpse of the lives of real people in the person of her characters. 

This debut novel establishes author Peggy Blann Phifer as a suspense writer with a bright and successful publishing future. The best thing about this book is that the story continues. Book two will follow!

Peggy Blann Phifer is an author and columnist, book reviewer and author interviewer, whose work has appeared on various Web sites and writer periodicals both in print and online. She is also an avid reader who loves to escape by diving between the covers of a good book. Peg enjoys handcrafts of all kinds and her home shows off some of her work, though most end up as gifts for friends and family. A retired executive assistant, Peg now makes her home in southern Nevada with husband of 25 years, Jim.

TO SEE THE SUN is her debut novel, released January 2012

Contact Peggy at her website
Visit her blog “Whispers in Purple"
Friend her on Facebook 
Follow her on  Twitter


  1. Thank you so much for hosting me here, Pat, and for the lovely introduction. It's true. Our friendship began in 2004 at the Colorado Christian Writer's Conference, in a snow storm!

    Also, thank you for the wonderful review! I'm thrilled and honored by your words and your encouragement.

    See you next month!

  2. Yes, I remember that snowstorm, Peg! How I wish we were seeing some of that white stuff now. LOL!

    You know I am so proud of you, girlfriend, for your perseverance, your faith, and your commitment to the One who rules over all.

  3. Hi Patti and Peg,
    Congratulations on your book and persevering to get it done and published. The Lord has His timing and Way.
    Praying favor on your book.
    Looks like one I will have to get.

  4. Thanks, Patricia. If you do get it, I really hope you'll enjoy it.

  5. Pat, would you let me know when someone comments? Somehow I can't subscribe the the Comments notification option.

  6. Thanks, Pat & Peg, for a wonderful blog. As another over 50 writer, I salute your courage, Peg. I also plan to get that book & read it. Thanks.

  7. Thanks for the visit, Janet. Good to see you here. I hope you'll come back for the next installment and leave a comment. Each time, each comment gets you an extra entry to win.

  8. Hi Janet. Thank you for stopping by! Glad you enjoyed the interview.


Y!our comments welcome!

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