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Guest author - Sadie and Sophie Cuffe

How did you come up with your premise? Is there a story behind your book? How did the story evolve?

Strangers often ask us if we’re twins. We’re not, but we’ve always thought it would be fun to have an identical twin. The premise of having someone who looks exactly like you isn’t new, but we like to think we put a different spin on it by having one twin impersonate his abducted brother while searching for the kidnapper.

We write what we know and what comes from the heart. The story behind this book is the story of rural folk everywhere, living off the land, protecting their families, and dealing with the challenge of new ideas and change.

The story evolved very slowly. We knew what would happen in the plot, but at the first writing, we have to be honest, we hated the hero and heroine. Innumerable rewrites later, we feel it’s evolved into something readers will enjoy.

For those who are not familiar with this story, would you please give us the blurb?

As undercover agent, Jackie Duncan, ferrets out environmental activist, Rand Adams and his turbulent plans for the logging town of Stellar’s Ford, she sees double when identical twin, Robbie, assumes his brother’s identity. After nearly getting skewered by an arrow at a tree-spiking site, Jackie’s list of suspects grows, and her rural childhood haven boils over with protests and arson. At every turn, Rand Adams (or is it Robbie?) is a step ahead of her.

When her investigative work won’t turn the tables, Jackie stubbornly befriends this would-be enemy and discovers, though they share the same face, Robbie is not his volatile brother. But who is he, and will their fragile love and common faith be enough to weather the arrival of brother, Rand, and his claims of being a kidnapped pawn in a cat-and-mouse game that's about to turn deadly for all of them?

Are there any fun tid-bits about this story you can share with us?

Sometimes the supporting characters take on a life of their own and in Arrow That Flies it happened with mill owner and grown-juvenile-delinquent, Brad Stanley, and his Great-aunt Myra. Sophie’s favorite line in the whole book is Jackie’s take on Brad Stanley, “She might not know a gearbox from a jewelry box, but she knew a dipstick when she saw one.” And eighty-year-old Myra is the woman we all aspire to be one day, complete with rapier wit, big heart, a bigger shotgun, and perfect one liners like:. "Just because I shake your hand, doesn't mean I trust you.”

How did you decide on the setting?

Several years ago we lived in a county with more trees than people. The forest provided for everyone in big and small ways. Drawing from that experience, we chose a place set in the hills, remote and wild enough to be out of the mainstream and a little dangerous to lend bite to the suspense factor. But the setting is small town cozy enough to add a touch of shock when the calm and security of rural life is shattered by violence and revenge.

When will it be released?

Arrow That Flies was released in August 2011 by Desert Breeze Publishing. Thanks for asking. It's available from Desert Breeze Publishing at this link:

as well as from at:

Where were you born?

Both born and bred in Maine, YAY!

If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be?

Right where we are - we love it here!

What hidden talent do you possess outside of writing... something you do for fun, but are good at?

Sadie: I can pinpoint the time without a watch and I can snap brush (Gather evergreen fir tips in the woods to make fresh fragrant Christmas wreaths and garland.) very fast, faster than Sophie.

Sophie: I usually sing the harmony line with whatever's playing on the sound systems in stores or restaurants. I understand this can be annoying.

What’s your favourite colour?

Sadie: Candy apple red

Sophie: any shade of blue.

What music groups/artists blast from your CD player while you write?

Sadie: Crossing the Borders: Celtic Folk music; Carmen Gilman with The Newton Street Irregulars: The Comforts of Home; & Celtic Wonder: various artists

Sophie: what Sadie's listening to because whoever touches the dial first, rules the player. Good thing we share similar musical tastes!

What are you most passionate about, other than writing?

Sadie: farming.

Sophie: music and farming and sewing and cooking and...

What got you interested in writing?

Sadie: I took a job on a ranch and started a journal about my experiences (I stink at journaling and didn’t continue for more than a couple of weeks). My boss was into writing cowboy poetry and read me some of his works. The ranch job didn’t last but the idea that I could write poetry as good as he could, did. My poetry phase was a bust, but once I started writing, I never stopped.

Sophie: Sadie was writing for God's World Publications and getting paid for it! After a few months of doing her final edit (my area of expertise), I thought, "I can do this." So I submitted a piece and was accepted.

What advice would you give a new writer just starting out?

Keep at it. Our favorite quote before we were published was, "Even a blind pig can find an acorn once in awhile." Hmmm, it worked for us.

Are you working on anything at the present you’d like to share with us?

We’re working on the sequel to Arrow That Flies called Warrior’s Journey. We started with identical twins and now it’s time to tell the brother’s tale. They may look alike on the outside, but inside they’re as different as fire and ice.

When did you first consider yourself a writer?

Sadie: I thought of myself as a writer when I landed a job writing a weekly human interest column for the newspaper. The first thing my editor said to me was: “Anybody can write about one thing because everybody has something that bugs them. I’ll give you a shot and let’s see if you can write about more than one thing.” I kept the job for five years.

Describe your writing space.

Sophie: Our writing space is in our daylight basement. We sit back-to-back so we can't see each other's computer screens (except when Sadie gets into hover mode). We're surrounded with filing cabinets and homemade (by our father) book cases and desks with a woodstove about ten feet away. And there's always the dog at our feet and a couple of cats who like to noodle around on the keyboards. It can make for some interesting conversations in our characters.

What do you do in your spare time? (Assuming you have any ;-) )

Sophie: I like to sew. I make clothes for my three grandchildren. And I love making cloth dolls. Our 82-year-old mother, Sadie, and I also knit sweaters for the Guideposts Knit for Kids Sweater Project.

What genre would you like to explore that you haven’t tried to write in yet? Will you? What would you never see yourself writing?

Sadie: I would like to explore steam punk. It combines history, fun, whimsy, and tons of out-of-the-box thinking. When we get caught up on all our other writing projects, even if I’m 90 I want to give it a go. I would never write erotica or pornography, anything that degrades and harms other people.

Do you really, really want a dog?

Already have one named Henry - he's a mostly-Australian Shepherd and does an excellent job of keeping our goats in line.

Do you hate how you look in pictures?


When you looked in the mirror this morning, what was the first thing you thought?

Sadie: Oh man! I still have bad hair!

What’s a saying you use a lot?

Sadie: “How’s that?”

Sophie: "How rude!"

What’s the strangest thing you’ve ever eaten?

Sophie: An Asian neighbor once brought me what looked like a chocolate-covered coconut candy for my birthday. I took a huge bite, only to discover it was seaweed covered rice. There was no disguising my surprise. I think I managed to swallow it and smile, but I'll never make that mistake again!

Have you ever cried during a movie?

Sadie: A movie isn’t worth watching if it doesn’t make me cry.

Sophie: I cry during heart-wrenching commercials, so movies - yeah, definitely!

If you could see anyone tomorrow (dead or alive), who would it be?

Sadie & Sophie: Our dad, who passed away nearly three years ago. This book is dedicated to him.

My review:

In Arrow that Flies, Sadie and Sophie Cuff have created a suspenseful tale that pulls you in from the offset. A ransom note, pinned to the door with an arrow, drags RJ into a world where he has to pretend to be his brother. Only he didn’t bank on falling for the woman investigating his brother. Set against a back drop of a mill owner and a group of environmentalists, what should be a simple assignment for Jackie, turns into a life and death struggle with not only her life but her heart on the line.

With a gripping storyline, a beautiful setting and real life characters, this story keeps your attention to the very last page. The scenery is beautifully described so that you can visualise it easily. This is the first book I have read by this author it won’t be the last.


Oh, Clare, we love you (but not in a creepy way!). Your synopsis of our book was way better than anything we could've done. Thanks so much for your kind and encouraging comments!
Anonymous said…
Neat post. Clare, this is an interesting blog page. I enjoyed the read about you two sisters. I miss mine and think you are fortunate to be so close. Your book is on my TBR list.
Janis Lane

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