Author Feature: Barb Caffrey

More from Nicholas 😉

Nicholas C. Rossis

Following the loss of her husband, Michael, Barb Caffrey has decided to keep their writing alive. She has now published A Dark and Stormy Night and To Survive the Maelstrom, finishing the stories he started.

I thought I’d share the story of this extraordinary woman here, taking advantage of a promotion for both A Dark and Stormy Night and To Survive the Maelstrom that runs until July 27th.

The Usual

From the blog of Nicholas C. Rossis, author of science fiction, the Pearseus epic fantasy series and children's booksHi Barb, great to have you here. Let’s start with a common enough question, to which I know that you have an unusual answer: what inspired you to write this book?

Since we’re talking mostly about the two books on sale at the moment – A Dark and Stormy Night is free and To Survive the Maelstrom is reduced to 99c until July 27 – I’ll stick with those.

My late husband wrote A Dark and Stormy Night trying to figure out…

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Tilting at Windmills, Or In This Case – Amazon


Jeff Bezos

Whether you love or loath Jeff Bezos and his monster child Amazon, what the members of Authors United (many of them, well known) simply fail to grasp is that its thanks to Amazon becoming a major book seller, that at long last the literary playing field has been levelled. The days when it was the exclusive domain of the snooty over priviledged few, especially here in the UK,  are finally over thank god! They can no longer rely on book sales based on what they have written in the past, or who they rub shoulders with to determine their social standing, in other words the old boy’s network. What they should be taking into consideration while their lawyers are busy ganging up on Amazon is this, what really counts? Is it your injured pride or is it the dramatic collapse in your book sales of late? Like it or not, from now on the only thing that matters is whether or not your latest title(s) actually appeals to the reader based on its content, not who you are! As for your righteous indignation at finding yourselves having to compete with the rest of us, welcome to the real world…

Finished, at least for now


Derek Haines

Phew!!! At long last I’ve finished the first draft of my erotic science fiction novella – The Guardian. It ended up at just over 30,000 words in fifty-two pages. My good friend and fellow author Derek Haines has also finished his latest comical scifi novella entitled March. He’ll hate me for saying this, but to give you a flavour of Derek’s humour, think of what Douglas Adams’ character Ford Prefect got up to in The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy – sorry Derek.

So, between us we are now reading through each other’s books. In Derek’s case March is a follow up to his highly successful and absolutely hilarious trilogy of Glothic Tales set in an imaginary place on the other side of our galaxy.

For the moment I will be devoting all my time to reading his latest through while I wait for his verdict on mine.

More later


A warning: The ABBA’s are everywhere and they’ve got to be stopped

Bloggers beware 😉


Remember this?

blog award

It hasn’t gone away. I did warn you of this new threat to peace and harmony in the Blogsphere. A subversive group, a self-selected gang of four have infiltrated our blogs with their ABBAs. They say it stands for the

Annual Blogger’s Bash Awards

Is that likely? Really it is? I can reveal its true meaning is

All Bloggers Be Afraid

They are out to undermine our privacy. They want us to meet! To share ideas. To enjoy each other’s company. As if we were actual human beings, capable of such normal interactions. I mean, if we were, would we blog? If we could talk to people FACE TO FACE don’t you think we would?

Have you noticed? These blogpolice are everywhere: tweeting and hashtagging; they are calling for recruits. As I warned a small select advanced party are planning on a get together on 1st August under cover…

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I’m Not Playing Your Stupid Games Anymore!!!


I’ve spoken of this in the past. Yet it keeps on happening. What am I talking about? Corporate greed and mind games. This morning I received not one but two snail mail letters from my current (no pun intended) energy supplier. The first asked me to do their job for them yet again by sending them a meter reading. The second negated the first by saying they had already got a meter reading and that it would be part of my next estimated bill – note they did say part, not the whole. If thats the case, why ask me to read the meter, which is clearly pointless in the first place?

I’ve obliged in the past on a number of occasions. But sending a reading never once lowered my electricity bill to an acceptable level no matter which energy provider I deal with, and I’ve dealt with a few over the years believe me. If anything, the amount they say I owe always increases after a meter reading. In other words, they still insist on a bill being based on guestimates of my quarterly electricity usage, combined with how much money they think they can extort from me to help expand their business and keep their shareholders happy.

So why should we cooperate with them by sending them a meter reading when we all know they will continue fleecing us come what may? I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. To them we’re nothing more than cash cows to be exploited!

Now I’m back on their case over their promise to install a smart meter. The appointment for the installation was the eight of March last. Needless to say they failed to turn up. I’ve been emailing them ever since to find out why they welched on the deal. All it gets me is their bog standard stonewalling reply – Thank you for your email. We’re really sorry, due to the continued Covid-19 outbreak, we may take longer than we’d like to respond to you. Your query is really important to us, however at present we’re prioritising emergencies. Please do not reply to this email as this is an automated response. They also sent another email asking for my name and address. If an official appointment to install a smart meter isn’t a priority, I’d like to know what the hell is!

This is their second form of stonewalling! By replying in this way they hope that I will grow tired of the whole thing and go away. Fat chance! They don’t know me at all…

If we were still living in the good old days when you only ever paid for the actual amount of eletricity used, based on the monthly meter readings by one of the provider’s employees, I would have no problem at all. But sadly those days are long gone. While they continue to rip off their customers there is no way I will cooperate with them! Even following the advice of various consumer groups who are constantly telling us to change energy providers if we’re disatissfied is completely pointless, given the simple fact that all energy providers are private businesses, out to make a profit at the expense of the user, knowing they have us over a barrel!

So Scottish and Southern Energy, think on! Until you tell me that as a customer of yours, you have my best interest at heart – fat chance, you know what my response will always be from now on. Your letters will be consigned to the paper shredder, and your emails will wind up in the trash! Get it through your thick corporate skulls, I’m sick and tired of playing your silly mind games!!! This all started back in 2015…

Whoever thought that privatising the country’s energy supply was a good idea, needs to be put up against a wall and shot! If the water and sewerage companies can keep their prices at an acceptable level by asking us to pay for what their meters tell them, even though they need to maintain and expand their infrastucture as well, why then can’t the electricity suppliers do the same thing?

Bring back nationalisation of the energy supply!

Bah Humbug



Juggling too many books at once?

Ffrom Brittney 😉



Is there such a thing as too many books (at one time?)

Up until this year, I only read one book at a time (except for when in school, of course). It would take me 1-3 days for a great book to finish, depending on other life events/obligations. Reading only one book at a time allowed me to focus and dive deep into the story. This year I have discovered so many new authors, and I keep downloading books and starting them – but it is taking so much longer for me to finish a novel!

I have been too anxious to wait to finish one book before staring another, so I have anywhere between 3-10 books I am reading at any given time. And I just don’t think this is working for me. Not only does it take me FOREVER to finish reading one book, but I don’t find…

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