Mystery, suspense, thrillers, paranormal, horror & YA by "Cheryl Kaye Tardif" & romance by "Cherish D'Angelo". Cheryl is represented by Trident Media Group in NY.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

"I Read About You in the Bathroom"

Back in 2006, I had an interesting experience, one I'll never forget. It taught me that readers and fans were to be valued above all else in this industry. Without readers and fans, I'm just someone with a lot of crazy ideas who happens to type them out.

On this particular day many years ago, I packed up my laptop and headed for my favorite haunt, a local coffee shop. I got there in the morning, sipped four jumbo mugs of cinnamon hazelnut coffee, had lunch (the Cheryl's Special Quesadilla), then later had a slice of lemon poppy seed loaf. I didn't leave until after 10:00 PM.

Talk about buzzed!!

I worked on Children of the Fog, my new suspense novel that asks, "How far would you go for your child?" (It's now in the hands of my agent.) I wrote in a frenzy, finishing 2 chapters, plus some editing. I was lost. Lost in my world--the one I had created for Sadie and Sam, the mother and son in my novel.

Then a small voice brought me back to reality.

"Are you Cheryl...T?" a young girl asked hesitantly.

"Yes," I answered. "Are you a friend of my daughter's?"

The girl shook her head. "I read about you in the bathroom."

I smiled. I had two posters on the bathroom walls of the coffee shop--one with the cover of The River, one with the cover of Divine Intervention.

"Do you have any of your books here?" the girl asked me.

Without a second thought, I put aside my laptop and searched the canvas tote bag, coming up with one Divine Intervention and the very last copy of The River (it had sold out across Edmonton by December 20th).

"I have both," I said.

She immediately raced off. "I'm going to tell my mom!"

A minute later, she reappeared with her mother in tow. The girl's enthusiasm was contagious and for a moment, I forgot they were here to see me...and not some rock star. :) The mother introduced herself and asked about my books. A minute later, Julie was writing me a cheque and I was signing her new books. Her daughter smiled all the while, then made my day all the more special by a simple request.

"Can I have your autograph?"

"Of course," I said, happily signing one of my bookmarks for her.

Julie walked away with her 2 books, while her daughter skipped away with her treasure--the bookmark.

I had to smile. The simplest of things and a few minutes of my time had made two people happy.

It wasn't until I got home that I recalled the girl's words: "I read about you in the bathroom." How funny that seems now.

Back then, I was confused. I realized that my posters couldn't possibly have indicated who I was. After all, they showed book covers, not ads saying, "Look for the woman with red hair typing maniacally on a laptop. That's Cheryl Kaye Tardif."

So how had she known?

When realization hit me, I began to laugh. You see, earlier that day I had switched the cover posters in the men's and women's washrooms. And I removed two smaller signs that announced a past book signing event. On the bottom of those signs I had mentioned that I could often be found in this coffee shop. There was even a small photo of me. But I had folded the signs in half and tossed them in the garbage can.

THAT'S how this young girl knew who I was.

Bless her heart for being so interested! :)

~Cheryl Kaye Tardif,
author of Whale Song, Divine Intervention and The River

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Writing a book is like having homework--every single day

For anyone who has wondered what it's like to write a book, here is author and comedian Lewis Black's very realistic description:

Friday, February 19, 2010

Cheryl's Goodreads Giveaway - Enter Now!

Sometime in March, I'll be giving away an autographed copy of The River and Divine Intervention to 2 winners (one book each) selected from my Goodreads friends.

If you haven't signed up on Goodreads, I recommend you do. This site is an excellent place to chat with other readers and authors, and you can compile your own "library" collection of books you've read, plus write reviews.

Once you've signed up at, please send me a friend invitation.

You can view my page at:

All you have to do is Friend-me to be entered in my Goodreads Giveaway. :-)

Good luck!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

EHM: Coventry Edition - the weeping moat gets rocked by the telebelt

On Day 17 of my Extreme Home Makeover: Coventry Edition, the empty "moat" around the basement walls of my new house is filled with rocks, after weeping tile is conveyed to the bottom by the telebelt.

No, a telebelt isn't some sort of covert teleportation device one might see on the Sci-Fi channel. It's a monstrous truck that shoots rocks down a conveyor belt. And contrary to its name, weeping tile isn't some kind of sappy, wet Italian marble tile but hard plastic piping with holes in it.

According to, "These porous pipes work with formations known as aggregates to allow collection of excess water from the surrounding ground, effectively eliminating an overabundance of groundwater in the area." In other words, it channels excess water to a sump or storm drain. Without this, your basement could flood, which I suspect would cause a lot of weeping.

Next, a backhoe will cover the rocks in the "moat" with dirt. This will allow me to walk around the outside of my basement without fearing I'll fall into a big hole, then drown because it starts raining and I can't get out--a recurrent nightmare I've had since I was a child. Seriously.

Yes, you can probably expect that I'll tackle that fear in one of my suspense thrillers.

And thus ends today's lesson in weeping moats and rocky telebelts.

Friday, February 12, 2010

EHM: Coventry Edition - my castle walls and moat

On Day 12 of my Extreme Home Makeover: Coventry Edition, my dream home finally has walls--concrete basement walls, so far. And what looks like a moat all around the house. If it rains, well suffice it to say, they'll be building a bridge.

We stopped by a few days ago when they were putting up the panels and rebar that form the casing for the concrete to be poured in. The guys who were putting the panels up answered our questions, explaining the process would take about 3 days depending on weather.

The first day we saw half the wall done, with clusters of panels scattered throughout, waiting to be put up. It made me think of a very strange Stonehenge ------>

Marc and I forgot to ask them about windows and doors. Do they cut them out afterward? Because when you walk along the perimeter once the panels are up, it just looks like it'll be a solid wall.

But we found out the secret later. They place wooden frames between the panels so that when the concrete is poured, it settles all around the outside of the frame. A-ha! Top secret, confidential secrets no longer. I have cracked the window/door code! Da Vinci, watch out!

Days later, they removed those lovely, rugged-looking panels and--voila! Concrete walls! With windows and a door.

With the lower level of our new home in the ground, the lot doesn't look so big. My husband is very happy about that. Our old home was built on one of the biggest lots in all of Meadowbrook, and mowing the grass is not his favorite chore. With our new house, our yard will be just right, especially since it'll have a deck with a hot tub.

As you can see, we already have trees out back. They're actually on the other side of the fence. That's one of the reasons I picked this lot--7 trees out back (5 are evergreens) and a handful more on the other side of the right-side fence.

Also, note how far away my neighbors are. No neighbors to share a fence with except on the left side. For me, this means privacy, something that's important to me. There's a wide path that runs behind our wood fence on right side. Out back and to the right is a circular green area with benches and more trees. And an even wider greenbelt with sidewalk runs parallel to our back fence.

So here's a closer look, just no peeking in our window; I haven't hung the curtains yet.

Larry, the site supervisor for Coventry Homes dropped by while we were visiting our "castle". He seemed to like the "Tardif Triumph" house design--it's a real original. (Like me, my husband says.) Larry said our house is going to be "beautiful". And I believe him.

Now all we have to do is figure out if we're going to have crocodiles or sharks swimming around the moat. Our daughter would prefer the latter.

This ends Day 12 of our build. I hope you're enjoying following our journey. Let me know what you think. Have you built before? Ever thought of it? Do you want to--now that you see how much fun it is?

~Cheryl Kaye Tardif,
who plans to write lots of bestsellers in her new home!

Thursday, February 11, 2010

AFNORTH NATO school gets novels by Cheryl Kaye Tardif

Last week, 15 of my novels were presented to the AFNORTH NATO school. Darren Rose, area manager for Coventry Homes in Edmonton, sponsored this generous donation and we arranged shipment of the books. I was so excited at the thought of my books in a school for kids from many different countries.

How did this all come about?

Eric, a teenager going to school at AFNORTH, was given an assignment to write about two works by Canadian authors. Only problem was the school library didn't have many novels by Canadian writers. And the teacher wanted the students to write about different authors, so they couldn't all use the handful of books there. Eric went on line and searched for Canadian writers. And up came my name. :-)

Birgit, Eric's mom, contacted me and wanted to know where she could buy my books. When she told me the whole story, I had an idea. In a matter of a day, I found a sponsor eager to participate and I made arrangements to send Eric an autographed copy of each of my novels, plus 15 extras for the school.

Today Birgit sent me a photo (above) of her son Eric with Mrs. Thibault, the Canadian section School Principal--each holding one of my novels. The photos (side and below) are of Mr. Donohue's GR 12 English 4U class and all the students are Canadian. There was even a write-up in the school newsletter.

"Your novels were presented to the school late last week," Birgit told me in an email. "The school is called AFNORTH and is a combined elementary, middle school and high school. It is located in Brunssum, Netherlands and is host to kids from many countries including Canada, U.S., U.K., N.L. and Germany."

I can't tell you how rewarding this is for me to know my books are in that school or to see photos of smiling teenagers holding my novels. I love it!!! And all because a teenager wanted to read my work and a sponsor believed the school deserved my books. It is at times like this when being a writer becomes so worthwhile, so fulfilling and my faith in my chosen career is justified.

My sincerest thanks to Darren Rose (sponsor), Eric & his mom Birgit, Mrs. Thibault and Mr. Donohue and everyone at AFNORTH.

For more information on the school, please visit:

Happy reading everyone!

~Cheryl Kaye Tardif

Friday, February 05, 2010

Day 5 EHM: Coventry Edition - the "Ho-Man" digs our lot

We drove out to our lot today, on Day 5 of our Extreme Home Makeover (EHM): Coventry Edition, and were met by Ryan, our "Ho-Man" or "Digger-Man". Ryan spent a lot of time answering my questions. Like, "Why are those sticks in the ground over there?" (They mark the corners of the house.)

Marc, my husband, and I were surprised how BIG the hole in the ground is. Ryan too. He said our house would be a "mansion" next to the other boxier two-storeys. Ours is a bungalow, a large bungalow. My dream home--minus the indoor swimming pool.
Speaking of swimming pools, our daughter's bff Alyssa is upset that we're moving. We live 5 houses away from her, and she's our other "daughter", so I don't blame her. Alyssa told us she'd be okay with our move (a 3 minute drive dow the road) if we put in a swimming pool for her. Well...if it rains in the next couple of days, that hole in our lot will be a gigantic pool. Alyssa! Bring your bathing suit! :-)

So back to our "Ho-Man"--and by the way, that's what he called himself--he told us that the Footings-Guys would be putting in the wood frame outline of the basement floor and filling it with concrete today. We're going to drive by after supper and check it out. I'll get a pic then of the footings and post it here...I know, how exciting. lol

And now for a message from my sponsor...

If you decide to build with Coventry Homes, let me know. Once you've finalized your deal and your house is built, I will give you a signed copy of my 2 bestselling thrillers--Divine Intervention and The River. Don't forget to tell Coventry I sent you; this is how we track the people I'm giving books to. This offer is good for all of 2010.

The second offer: If you contact our salesman and area manager Darren Rose and build with Coventry Homes and mention my name to him, Darren will give you an extra something special sometime around move in day. He's not saying what, but I know it'll be awesome!

Contact Darren Rose at or 780-757-5500

Wednesday, February 03, 2010

Day 3 Extreme Home Makeover: Coventry Edition -- Special Deals

Read this post to the end. There are two special deals or offers at the end.

So you want to build your dream home, but there are so many companies to choose from. How do you know which builder to go with? My husband and I have had 2 houses built--both with Coventry Homes. They've been in business since 1976. We were very happy the first time around, and I expect we'll be happy this time too. One thing we learned, Coventry takes very good care of their buyers. They also champion The Edmonton Humane Society with a program called "Homes for Hounds".

Building a house is exciting! Does this mean your build will go smoothly without a hitch? Probably not. There are always little mixups along the way, but the great thing is Coventry Homes takes responsibility and fixes them. This is all part of the home building experience. And I have to tell you, it's so much fun designing your own house plans. Especially picking all the colors and flooring and cabinetry. Everything is exactly the way YOU want it. That's the best part!

Okay, so here's a great offer for anyone thinking of building your own dream home in Edmonton, Alberta. I'm going to give autographed books to anyone who builds with Coventry Homes, providing you tell them I sent you.

If you're looking to build in Edmonton, here's MY special offer:

Check out Coventry Homes. Tell them "Cheryl Tardif" sent you. :-)

If you decide to build a Coventry Home, let me know. Once you've finalized your deal and your house is built, I will give you a signed copy of my 2 bestselling thrillers--Divine Intervention and The River. Don't forget to tell Coventry I sent you; this is how we track the people I'm giving books to. This offer is good for all of 2010.

The second offer: If you contact our salesman and area manager Darren Rose and build a Coventry Home and mention my name to him, Darren will give you an extra something special sometime around move in day. He's not saying what, but I know it'll be awesome!

Contact Darren Rose at or 780-757-5500

Day 2 of Extreme Home Makeover: Coventry Edition

Well, today is Day 3 but I didn't get out of the house to take a pic and I hadn't posted the pic from yesterday.

So here's what Day 2 of my Extreme Home Makeover: Coventry Edition brought me--a big pile of dirt, neon orange alien markings (thanks for that suggestion, Eileen!) and a hole on the lot.

There's a hole on my house lot, dear Liza, dear Liza.

Can't wait for Coventry Homes to put my new house in that hole!

Cheryl Kaye Tardif

Tuesday, February 02, 2010

Day 1 of Extreme Home Makeover: Coventry Edition

Okay, so you're probably reading the title of my post and saying, "What? Is Cheryl the recipient of ABC's Extreme Makeover: Home Edition? Is she getting her home in Edmonton, Alberta, demolished and then rebuilt? Will she have someone famous visiting her lot and helping with the build?" Well, the answers are simple: no.

We have an empty lot just waiting for a house. Here's a pic of my hubby taking a pic of our lot just before the build started.

Coventry Homes is building our new home. I took their "Triumph" design and made it my own. I now call this customized plan (featuring a ton of extras and more living space) the "Tardif Triumph". And I can't wait to move in!

But before I move in, Coventry has to build it. Hence, my Extreme Home Makeover: Coventry Edition. We'll be selling our old home in the upcoming weeks. Anyone want to buy the home of bestselling Edmonton author Cheryl Kaye Tardif? lol

Day 1 of the build saw the snow-covered ground cleared and the earth broken up by "The Claw", at least that's what I call that machine. Makes me think of eating lobster at Red Lobster and using a claw to scoop out the meat.

So what will Day 2 bring? Hopefully a big gaping hole in the ground. :-)

Coventry Homes is also a sponsor for one of my next novels. (Thank you, Coventry!)

~Cheryl Kaye Tardif