On The Bench Archive


Playing the name game — which one do you like?

Oh, those character names! Are they good? Not? Will readers like them. The author’s dilemma is a huge one because the right name can make—or break—a character. Or will it? Our authors weigh in and ask for your ideas, too!

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Secondary characters on the bench

Secondary characters need some love, too!

Secondary characters can sometimes steal the show. For this month’s Characters on the Bench post, we all weigh in on the question of which character from any of our books do we think deserves their own novel or series…and why? The answers may surprise you…

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The trouble with favors

It’s happened to us all. We try to do someone a favor, and it backfires (sometimes spectacularly). What good turn have you done for a person (or has someone done for you) that didn’t work out quite as planned? Find out what our authors have to say as they weigh in this month on the issue of favors.

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On the Bench and talking about traveling

On a trip, I need bathroom breaks. That usually equates to a stop at a Starbucks for coffee. While my wife doesn’t mind a stop at Starbies, she usually draws the line at places with porta-potties. Her usual comment is, “That’s easy for you.” Hey, I get it. Biology is biology. There are no two ways around that!

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Authors on the Bench

December’s Question Any traveling “detours” that drive your companions crazy? Do they ever end up in your books? Diane A.S. Stuckart: I much prefer to travel by car than any other way, and I love those ubiquitous roadside markers that commemorate births and deaths and battles and so on. If it were up to me, […]

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Happy Holidays To You

Holiday Cheer from All of Us We’re delighted you enjoy visiting with the authors of Booklover’s Bench. Nancy J. Cohen, Maggie Toussaint, Diane A.S Stuckart, Cheryl Hollon, Debra H. Goldstein, Terry Ambrose, and Lois Winston wish everyone a joyful holiday season. This year we’re each sharing our favorite holiday beverage. Cheers to all! Let’s hear […]

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Characters on the Bench

November’s Question Fancy footwork: what shoes would we find on you/your protagonist’s feet, and what footwear would you/they never be caught dead wearing?  Maggie Toussaint: While my catering sleuth tends toward practicality in her everyday footwear, River Holloway Merrick loves black stilettos. I’ve never been able to successfully walk in high heels of any height, […]

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Characters on the Bench

October’s Question What’s the best place to eavesdrop on conversations, and have you used this in one of your books? Cheryl Hollon: When I was working on a long-term contract in England, my husband and I frequently took the train for a weekend getaway. The conversations were fascinating, especially if they were on a cell […]

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Authors on the Bench

September’s Question Seeing what animal/landmark/famous person was a memorable first in your life? Debra H. Goldstein: I had three memorable “first” famous person sightings. When I was five, I saw Howdy Doody and Buffalo Bob at a charity show and excitedly managed to get my not-so-excited dad picked to be part of a skit with […]

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Authors on the Bench

AUGUST’S QUESTION What mystery-based TV show(s) do you enjoy, and why? Nancy J. Cohen: I love the Hallmark Movie & Mystery Channel because their cozy mysteries are the type I enjoy. These are mostly lighthearted and fun with a dash of romance. I also am a fan of The Brokenwood Mysteries on the Acorn Channel. […]

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Characters on the Bench

July’s Question What outrageous character names tickle your fancy? Terry Ambrose: I’m terrible with outrageous character names! However, I’ll give this a go. How about a femme fatale named Scarlett Ribbons? Or a boss who was called Malum Dictatum? The psycho could be Doozy McCoozy. And a stalking ex could be Folle McVey. Nancy J. […]

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