author interviews

Inspirational Journeys Presents: Special Guest Interview with Tish Bouvier

My special guest cohost and I talk about writing and we promote each other’s work. Click the links below to hear and/or view our engaging conversation

I’m proud to announce the following guest for your listening pleasure.
Please be sure to read onward after the following message to learn how you can be my guest here on INSPIRATIONAL JOURNEYS.
Thanks for listening and do write to let me and my guest know what you thought of this presentation.

Tish Bouvier
Thursday, march 26, 2020



Tish Bouvier (pronounce boo-vee-ei), IS an emerging author and haiku poet. She lives in Houston, Texas, married 27 years, with three daughters. After retiring as a hospice nurse, Tish Bouvier participated in NaNoWriMo and discovered a passion for creative writing. She’s writing her first cozy mystery series, and a 30 Day Haiku Challenge for Kids which can be found on her YouTube channel .

Her book is entitled, Echoes and Whispers: Haiku for NaNo Writers

Ignite your muse and STOP staring at a blank screen. Echoes and Whispers haiku for NANO writers paints a brief, though vivid picture written in the simplicity of a 5-7-5 format. Each haiku serves as a writing prompt to help writers and poets taking part in NaNoWriMo filter out the noise and listen to the whispers of forgotten memories, abandoned secrets, and a passing thought.

Purchase link:


chaos silenced by whispers
scattered thoughts captured

Connect with Tish at the following links:


As authors, creative artists and entrepreneurs, we often find it hard to stand out above the constant chatter on the internet. If that sounds like you, I’d like to help you boost the visibility of your brand. My name is Ann Harrison-Barnes and I run a podcast called Inspirational Journeys. On my podcast I post solo episodes of value to my listeners, led by the Holy Spirit. I also talk to authors, creative artists and entrepreneurs who want to share their inspirational journeys with the world. If you’re interested in being a guest on my show, please send an email to or fill out the form found at:
Please be sure to leave Inspirational Journeys in the subject line of your email or in your comment on my contact form so that I can send you my interview framework.
If you’re launching a book, please let me know and I’ll send you my featured book questionnaire. I ask that you do this, so I can feature your book in the show notes blog post associated with the podcast
Thanks for listening to Inspirational Journeys and have a Blessed Day.

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Please fill out the contact form below if you wish to subscribe to my newsletter:

#amwriting, NaNoWriMo updates

Inspirational Journeys Presents: NaNoWriMo Week 1

Welcome to week 1 of National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo). In today’s podcast episode I share my writing/revising/rewriting progress and give you tips and encouragement to stay motivated during the rest of the month.

As for my word count so far, I’m at 4435 and I plan to get at least another thousand or so words in, before the day is over. Instead of adding the total number of words in my entire manuscript, I just count the words I’ve added, regardless of how many more I cut from the manuscript. I guess you could say that I’m a NaNoRebel, doing what some would call Cheeto-WriMo.

For the past two nights, I did some word sprints with a twitter friend and that’s how I got a lot of my words in. I find myself writing at night, for some reason during NaNoWriMo, but I won’t do that any other time of the year. However, I plan on getting some words in later this afternoon
If you’d like to join me in some word sprints during the month, there are two ways you can do this. You can email me at, or tag me on Twitter @annwrites75. If We’re doing word sprints, don’t forget to mention @NaNoWordSprints as well. Be sure to use the hash tag #nanocafe if you’d like to invite others to join us as we sprint to the NaNoWriMo finish line. If you’d like to add me as a buddy, my NaNoWriMo username is AnnWritesInspiration.

If you want to leave messages with your NaNoWriMo buddies, you may do so by visiting:

Listen to my NaNoWriMo update, including tips and encouragement on my Inspirational Journeys podcast:

I’ve got to go, because I’ve got to get back to writing/editing/revising. You need to get some words in today, too, if you’re doing NaNoWriMo along with me. Happy writing and good luck with NaNoWriMo. Let’s end up with more words than we had when we started.

#amwriting, NaNoWriMo updates

Inspirational Journeys Presents: NaNoWriMo Prep Talk

Hello Bloggers and WriMos in the blogosphere,
First of all, I’d like to welcome all my new followers over the past few months! Thanks for stopping by the blog, may my posts, podcast episodes, and YouTube videos be entertaining and valuable to you in your author/blogging journey.

There are four days until NaNoWriMo starts on Friday November 1st. If you haven’t already done so, now’s the time to create an account and announce your NaNoWriMo project at:
If you’d like to hang out with my friend Tish Bouvier and me, and talk about your writing goals for NaNoWriMo, log onto twitter and search for the #nanocafe hashtag. I’ll see you there!

Don’t forget, if you don’t reach 50,000 words by November 30, you’re still a winner, because you’ve got more words than you had when you started. However, if you surpass the 50k word goal, you’re a winner, too. To listen to my NaNoWriMo prep talk episode of Inspirational Journeys, click here:


#amwriting, NaNoWriMo updates, poetry

Original Poetry: The Joy of NaNoWriMo

Hello wordsmiths, Wrimos, storytellers and writing gurus,
Today I have a poem I wrote to get you geared up for NaNoWriMo, which starts in fifteen days! Enjoy my tribute to this exciting challenge for novice and expert writers alike. Happy plotting, pantsing, plantsing and writing.

November has been set aside
for national novel writing.
Writers from around the world
Find this month exciting.

Novices and experts
Race against the clock
Words are counted every day
As time goes by, tick-tock

Will you get your 50k
Or will you fall behind
Writing your first draft
As November unwinds.

If you don’t reach the monthly goal,
Don’t worry, you’re still a winner
To celebrate your daily word count
Why not go out with friends for dinner!

Come join your fellow WriMos
A story you must tell,
Write something new, revise something old
Break the rules and rebel!.

The pressure’s on, the steaks are high
To get those precious words penned down
You’re not alone in your writing stride,
For writers hale from far and near,
You may find some in your own home town.

Will you come along with me,
My beloved writing friend
And join this challenge in November?
The furious writing doesn’t end
Until the first day of December.

podcasting, poetry

Original Poetry: The Window to My Writing World

When you open my window
What will you see?
Pages and words
Dotted with bits of me.

Ideas that flow like raindrops
upon a fresh blank page
Words that will forever
Last from age to age.

These ideas I must write down,
For I mustn’t forget,
Each story has new characters
Whom I’ve never met.

They bring about plot twists and turns
Upon my mental movie screen,
It’s hard to know which scene comes first,
My characters play them out so well,
I have to write them in short bursts.

I mold, shape and revise each scene
developing them into. a book
for when you turn each beautiful page
you have a chance to take a look
through the window of my writing world.

The poem above, was inspired by one of the following three writing prompts I talk about in today’s episode of Inspirational Journeys.
1. Do writers bleed ink?
2. What would happen if you built a world where words appeared from out of nowhere? Where would they come from and what trials would your characters face to find the source of these mysterious words?
3. What would people see if they looked through the window to your writing world.

You can listen to the podcast episode here:


NaNoWriMo updates, Uncategorized

NaNoWriMo update number 4,Keep adding words, though you don’t win

Hello everyone,

Today I am bringing you my Nano update a day late, because in the US, yesterday was Thanksgiving, and I wanted to spend the time with my family. However, without further ado, let me give you my personal NaNoWriMo WIP, which is 28286. Although I am over half way done with my novel, it is wise to note that I feel as if I am finally linking most of the pieces of my story together.


Now, for a bit of encouragement: We have one more week of NaNoWriMo left. If you have participated in NaNoWriMo, yet haven’t reached the 50k word goal, don’t worry. You are still a winner, because you have more words and more story than you had when the month started. Keep writing those words and enjoy the ride.


Even though some Nano participants say don’t go back and read your story, I say that you might want to, not to edit, mind you, but to fill in any gaps you find in your narrative.


Good luck with NaNoWriMo and happy writing. God bless each and every one of you.

#amwriting, NaNoWriMo updates, Uncategorized

NaNoWriMo Update Number Three: How to take a Nano prep day in the Middle of the Month

Hey everybody in the blogosphere, today I have a personal NaNoWriMo update and a bit of advice for all you WriMos out there. As of today, I am up to 18,964 words on my NaNoWriMo manuscript, 1208 of which were written this morning. I have written the end of my novel, now I have to go back and fill in the rest of the story. However, I have also written a part of the epilog that will give me the spark I need to Segway into another mystery with these characters.


My advice for you today is to take a preparation day for your story. I know you only have 30 days to reach the overall 50,000-word goal, in order to win NaNoWriMo. However, there are going to be some days when you can’t think of a word to write for your story. When this happens, it’s best just to use the writing session you had planned to do some brainstorming for your novel. By this I mean ask some questions and talk about plot ideas you have to help move your story forward. Once you do this, either later that night or even the next day, something will trigger your creative muse, and the spark will ignite into a flame once more.


Let me explain how this happened to me. Yesterday, I racked my brain to come up with something to write. I did all the usual stuff, listening to podcasts, finding sounds on my echo dot etc., but nothing seemed to work. However, I opened up my journal and began the process of brainstorming for my novel. I spoke to a friend who is like a sister to me and told her the ideas I had, then I wrote them down. I also wrote down some questions to stimulate my brain into a creative mode. Nothing happened.


What happened to get me writing today? Well, here’s what added fuel to my creative fire. I sat at the table, eating a bowl of cereal and drinking a cup of Starbuck’s Peppermint Mocha Latte coffee and “watching” an old episode of Perry Mason, when the idea for the ending chapter of my story just slapped me in the face. It seemed to say: “Write me! Write me now!”. After I cleaned up my breakfast dishes and the coffee pot, I came back in my space and went straight to work. This inspiration carried me through the ending chapter and the epilog.


If you have a day where you just can’t think of anything to write for your story, that’s okay, because you have to give your brain a break once in a while. I personally recommend a brainstorming day like I took yesterday. It works wonders for your story and your characters will thank you for it.


Now, for you WriMos out there, what do you do to combat writers block? Do you take a brainstorming day, simply plow through the toughest part of your story, or do you give your brain a break? Share your writer’s block tips in the comments below.

Until next time, happy writing and may the muse be with you.

NaNoWriMo updates, Uncategorized

Advice from a NaNo Rebel

Hello everyone, today I want to talk about my favorite time of year as a writer. This is National Novel Writing month (NaNoWriMo), which takes place throughout the month of November.


This year, I have awarded myself several personal badges, one of which is the rebel badge. Although NaNoWriMo rules say that you should start something new and fresh during the month of November, sometimes you need this time to work on something that you’ve already started. What difference does it make what you write, as long as you get your word count in? However, this is not the reason I call myself a rebel. I gave myself this badge, because I started working on my novel a day early. I couldn’t wait until today to start, so I started writing yesterday and by the time I went to bed last night, I was already over 3000 words into my novel. I wrote over 2000 today, thus far. As long as you don’t tell anyone on the forums that you’ve done this, I don’t see anything wrong with starting early. I heard of one lady on one of my Facebook groups that did her NaNoWriMo challenge in October, due to the fact that she had other commitments in November. She just kept up with her word count each day and filled the numbers in in November, so she could participate with everyone else.


This is not to say that you should or shouldn’t break the NanoWriMo rules, especially if you’re doing NaNoWriMo for the first time. Here’s a little advice for you. Don’t stress over making sure you reach the goal of 50K in 30 days. Yes, that’s the goal we all strive for, and you can win some awesome goodies if you do, but if you don’t finish your novel during the month of November, that’s okay too. This simply means that you have gotten further in your novel than you did before you ever decided to write. For me it’s not about winning the challenge, it’s about writing alongside hundreds of thousands of writers and getting inspiration from these writing friends in the forums when you’re stuck in the middle of a scene or chapter.


Before I go, there is one piece of advice that I heard on the Author Stories podcast episode where Hank Garner interviewed Jan Karon. This episode can be found at the following link:

Ms. Karon said that if you let fear hold you back, you’ll never be able to write a word. I’ve found this to be true. I simply had to push my fear of rejection aside and sit down in front of my computer and write whatever came to my mind, before I could write my first story or blog post. So instead of finding reasons why you can’t write, just sit down, place your fingers on your keyboard or the pen in your hand and a piece of paper in front of you, and write whatever you want. I don’t care what you write, just write something as simple as the fact that you don’t know what to write. Once you get started and open up the flood gates, your story, essay, blog post, or whatever you long to write will take shape.


One final thought, don’t let your writing become stressful. Have fun with your story, and if it looks messy now, remember that you can go back and fix any problematic areas later. Just let the words come to you naturally, and even if you have to write fast to keep up with your muse, that’s better than having no story at all. Feel free to share your own writing progress or any thoughts you have about NaNoWriMo in the comments below.


Until next time, I’ve got to get back to writing, so I’ll update you next week. Happy writing and have fun with NaNoWriMo.


Pantsers, plantsers,and planners: Which category I fall into and how I get my Write on during NaNoWriMo

November is National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo). During the entire month of November, writers from around the world virtually come together, to write 50,000 words in 30 days. This is my third year participating in NaNoWriMo, and I have learned that there are three types of NaNo-ers, and I personally fall into two of these categories. Let me explain what I mean.


Pantsers, are writers who simply write their novels, with no outline or notes to use as a guide. They simply write their stories “by the seat of their pants”, as it were. I wrote The Apple Wheel back in 2014 that way. My first NaNo novel was inspired by a dream, and I signed up for the challenge just two days before it began at midnight on November 1.


Plantsers, are writers who losely plan their stories, by noting down general scene ideas, while pantsing the rest of their story during NaNoWriMo. I have become a plantser, using the scene notes I wrote back in September and October of 2015, as a rough guide, yet allowing my characters to drive the story.


Planners are the writers who use outlines and do their research ahead of time, so they have a more tightly woven guide to follow, although the outline may not be actually set in stone. I personally don’t see myself as a full planner, though as a Plantser, I dabble a little with scene ideas.

Now that I’ve described the three NaNo categories, which type of writer are you, a pantser, a plantser, or a full fledged planner? I’d be interested to read your answers in the comments below.


Camp NaNoWriMo is in full swing

It’s the second day of Camp NaNoWriMo, and I’ve been inspired in an unusual way.. I’m writing a story called The Magic Mist, which will probably be a part of my next Stories Outside the Box Ebook, but that will take a while to put together. However, I didn’t write much at all yesterday, but I made up for that by doing some writing on my phone, which I had to ultimately clean up. So, earlier today I wrote a little, it, and that’s when I had a case of writers block. When I was getting my daughter to bed and playing my bowl for her, which helps her to sleep, a burst of inspiration hit me all of a sudden. If you’re a writer like me, you will have to agree that the muse doesn’t care how tired you are, or what time of the day or night it strikes, it inspires you, when it gets good and ready. Well, let me tell you, that’s exactly what happened to me and why I’m up late. All I can say, is good luck to you Camp NaNo-ers out there, and keep writing dangerously.
Good night and God bless you all. May the muse take you where it will, when it takes a notion.